Findings based on incidents, audits, fleet age and aircrew training. Just one US airline with flights to Hawaii made the top 10.

Only One Airline Flying to Hawaii in 10 Safest Airlines Rankings

The annual ratings of safest airlines in the world is out and only one US airline that flies to Hawaii made the cut of the top 10 airlines., says it is “the world’s only airline safety and product rating website.” It monitors 385 airlines globally.

Airline safety (and reliability) ratings can, in theory, help passengers, especially in terms of those seeking the most reliable travel experience possible. But whether this helps is anyone’s guess. Understanding how these ratings are determined may also help travelers make informed decisions when choosing an airline for flights to Hawaii.

As the aviation industry evolves, safety is, of course, a top priority. When BOH editor Jeff talked with Alaska Airlines’ executive in charge of their integration with Hawaiian, Joe Sprague, who reports to CEO Ben Minicucci, he mentioned their top priority of keeping safety first during distractions caused by the acquisition and how it impacts the airlines’ employees. To us, this was great advice coming from a seasoned airline executive.

In later news Friday, an Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 9 suffered a blow-out and rapid decompression incident which resulted in an emergency landing. This New Plane Flew 22 Hawaii Flights Prior To Mid-Air Blowout.

Top 25 safest airlines for 2024 by AirlineRatings

  • Air New Zealand
  • Qantas
  • Virgin Australia
  • Etihad Airways
  • Qatar Airways
  • Emirates
  • All Nippon Airways
  • Finnair
  • Cathay Pacific Airways
  • Alaska Airlines (#10; was #8 for 2023)
  • SAS
  • Korean Air
  • Singapore Airlines
  • EVA Air
  • British Airways
  • Turkish Airlines
  • TAP Air Portugal
  • Lufthansa/Swiss Group
  • KLM
  • Japan Airlines
  • Hawaiian Airlines (#21; was #12 for 2023)
  • American Airlines (#22; was #19 for 2023)
  • Air France
  • Air Canada Group
  • United Airlines (#25)

“These airlines are standouts in the industry and are at the forefront of safety, innovation, and launching of new aircraft.” editor-in-Chief Geoffrey Thomas

Alaska Airlines makes the top 10.

That’s right, Alaska is the only airline flying to Hawaii that ranked so high.

These airlines with flights to Hawaii weren’t ranked among the 25 safest airlines.

We have no qualms about flying either of these airlines. Clearly, however, based on the information used to determine these rankings, they did not make this year’s cut.

  • Delta Air Lines (was #20 for 2023)
  • Southwest Airlines

What’s the logic behind these ratings? analyzes “crashes over five years, serious incidents over two years, audits from aviation’s governing bodies and lead associations; government audits, fleet age, and aircrew training.”

The company says, “All airlines have incidents every day, and many are aircraft or engine manufacture issues, not airline operational problems. It is the way the flight crew handles these serious incidents that determines a good airline from an unsafe one. Our top 25 safest airlines in 2024 are always at the forefront of safety innovation, operational excellence, and the launching of new, more advanced aircraft such as the Airbus A350, Boeing 787, and 777-9.”

You can read their airline ratings criteria here.

Would you consider these when choosing an airline for your flight to Hawaii?

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22 thoughts on “Only One Airline Flying to Hawaii in 10 Safest Airlines Rankings”

  1. Choosing what airline has a lot to do with where you live. I live in central Texas and American has always been the most affordable with the best connections. If I fly United, I have to fly to Houston to have a longer direct flight for several hundred dollars more. Delta is not even a consideration. When I heard Hawaiian was offering direct flight to OGG and HNL, I looked into it. Sadly I couldn’t find flights available to return after a 14 day vacation. I won’t even consider the other airlines. We have status with American, thankfully, so that is our go to.

  2. This reminds me of Michael Bloomberg’s advice on financial planning: “bounce the check to the undertaker”.

    Here, “buy your ticket on a credit card you pay after you get home (safely)”.

  3. 1/25/23 traveled on Southwest to Oahu. It was Terrible. LV nonstop. The gate mgr threatened to deplane the entire airplane 3 times after an hour delayed flight due to a woman who had put her lap baby in a seat. Merry Christmas. Never again Southwest! I will pay more skip this airline!

        1. Just to be clear here, we’re talking safety. And American Airlines has left more aluminum on hilltops throughout the world than any other airline.

          1. Very true however Delta left it there most recently. Does that make me avoid Delta? No.

            The only statistic that really affects my flight choice is avoiding prop and regional jet puddle jumpers which have a consistently higher risk. I also used to refuse to fly DC10’s in the past.

            I always have my safety belt on whenever I am seated or sleeping as it makes sense to me and I do not understand why others do not.

            On a slightly different side, JAL do seem to take safety more seriously than other carriers. The BA Safety video is just an attempt to make a local comedy show. I wish AA would use the tag safe is what we are going for rather than great. Word choice can mean a lot.

  4. I don’t understand how these ratings are compiled. Seems you take the total number of in air mechanical emergencies requiring diversions last year divided by the total number of flights. The lower the number, the safer the airline. Cant imagine SWA being omitted from the worlds safest airlines.

  5. How ironic that the one airline is Alaska. I wonder if their if their rating of safest airlines will change for Alaska.

  6. The majority of Americans don’t regularly fly on foreign airlines and most fly to Hawaii on U.S. carriers.

    One may include innovation, aircraft fleet or even whether or not they serve macadamia nuts in a safety survey but it really comes down to deaths and injuries.

    There’s only one airline in the United States flying to Hawaii with the best & longest safety record and that is Hawaiian Airlines.

    Sadly, Hawaiian’s investors are tired & gready, seeking to cash in on a huge profit while ditching one of the greatest airlines of all time (Hawaiian was the first scheduled air cargo service in the United States).

  7. Umm i think your headline is wrong? It says only one airline in the top 10 flies to Hawaii, but i see Air New Zealand which flies to Hawaii, as does Qantas. Add in Alaska and I think that makes at least 3 of the top 10 fly to Hawaii?

  8. If I read the list of current top 25 airlines flying to Hawaii, Hawaiian is listed as #21 whereas last year, 2023, they were #12. Doesn’t that mean that their position seriously deteriorated, not improved as the article states??

  9. I am sorry but I find these “Studies” very suspect. They are too open to bias in selection criteria. I pay no attention to them but prefer to do my own research.

  10. Hello,
    In the list of 25 safest airlines in the article, you state Hawaiian airlines is #21, was #12 for 2023.
    Further down in the article you state “It’s interesting to note that Hawaiian improved its 21st position last year to 12th for 2024”
    It appears this statement conflicts with the information in the list. Can you please clarify Hawaiian airlines ranking for 2023 and 2024?
    Thank you!

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