Announcing winners and highly commended airlines of the annual SimpliFlying Awards 2018

Conducted every year since 2010, the esteemed SimpliFlying Awards acknowledge and award airlines for their exceptional work in digital and social media marketing.

This year, best airlines were honored in four business categories, including Best Use of Influencers, Best Airline In Launches, Best Airline in Social Care and Best Airline in Driving Revenue, along with two special categories for Best Small Airline and Best Overall Airline.

Canada’s WestJet and Iceland-based WOW Air and emerged as the most triumphant of the SimpliFlying Awards 2018 at the awards ceremony alongside the Aviation Festival in London.

The award for Best Overall Airline 2018 was given to WestJet as it “continues to raise the bar in every category,” according to the judge Max Kingsley-Jones. WestJet enjoyed further success by winning major awards for the Best Use of Influencers and the Best Airline in Driving Revenue.

WOW air was honoured as the Best Small Airline 2018 for its continuously disruptive and low-cost digital marketing strategy.

“SimpliFlying Awards recognizes airlines on the cutting edge of marketing innovation. It’s heartening to see the likes of WestJet and WOW Air pushing the boundaries of airline marketing,” said Shashank Nigam, CEO, SimpliFlying.

WestJet also received the special honour of being inducted in the Hall of Fame for sustained excellence in social media marketing. This was the third time at the SimpliFlying Awards an airline has been inducted into the Hall of Fame, following American Airlines in 2017 and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines in 2015.

“It was impressive to see how airline marketers are integrating their digital activities into the rest of the business and deploying digital tools in such an innovative, creative and measurable way, regardless of their size and business model,” admits the judge Michelle Lee. “This is great to see especially since technology continues to become increasingly more sophisticated and we are operating in environments where Marketing continues to drive value and deliver business impact.”

Each year, airlines are assessed on how they have demonstrated innovativeness, engagement and business impact in the past year by highly-esteemed juries. The judging panel 2018 comprised stalwarts of airline and marketing, including Michelle Lee (CMO for Middle East Africa & Eastern Southern Europe at MetLife), Max Kingsley-Jones (Executive Director Content at FlightGlobal), Marcelo Franco (Global CMO of Easy Taxi), Ricardo Rivera (Director of Marketing and Innovation at Best Buy in Mexico) and Barbara Pezzi (Former Director of Search and Marketing Optimisation at Fairmont Raffles Hotels International).

Results Of SimpliFlying Awards 2017

Best Use of Influencers: WestJet
Highly Commended: Cathay Pacific, Etihad Airways

Best Airline in Driving Revenue: WestJet
Highly Commended: Aeromexico, flyadeal

Best Airline in Social Care: Etihad Airways
Highly Commended: Avianca, Volaris

Best Airline in Launches: Cebu Pacific
Highly Commended: flyadeal, Lufthansa

Best Small Airline: WOW air

Best Overall Airline: WestJet

Hall of Fame: WestJet

A big round of applause to all SimpliFlying Awards 2018 finalists!

Special thanks go out to Terrapinn, especially Daniel Boyle from Business Design Centre for supporting the SimpliFlying Awards 2018. Also, thanks to Gaudio Awards for creating our beautiful trophies.


SimpliFlying Awards, first established in 2010, are the longest-running awards dedicated to recognising the best social media practices in the aviation industry. Airlines around the world are shortlisted and assessed by an external panel of distinguished airline and travel marketing stalwarts. Past award winners include KLM, Southwest, Air New Zealand, Turkish Airlines, American Airlines and more. Learn more

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