Ranked: the best and worst airlines for business-class travel

A new study has revealed the plane upgrades worth paying for – and the ones to avoid

Sophie Dickinson
Written by
Sophie Dickinson
Freelance contributor
Business class plane cabin
Photograph: Shutterstock

If you’re paying for business class, you expect something pretty special, right? Ample legroom, ambient lighting, maybe even some complimentary snacks. But apparently, not all business classes are created equal. 

This new study from luggage storage company Bounce has figured out which ones are actually worth spending money on. Using reviews aggregated via the Business Class blog and assessing airlines against categories like ‘amenities and facilities’, ‘cabin and seat’ and ‘cuisine’, the brand has given each airline a score.

And the carrier with the best business class cabins in the world? That would be Singapore Airlines, with a very respectable score of 9.57. It was awarded top marks for its food, drinks and entertainment options, only dropping marks slightly for cabin size and amenities. 

In second place was Qatar Airways, with the researchers praising its ‘Qsuite’ cabins, which have sliding doors, double beds and the ability for passengers to create their own private rooms. Hong Kong’s Cathay Pacific came in at number three, gaining a nine-point average across every category. 

And the very worst value? Egyptair, apparently, which got a dismal 5.71. It came the lowest in every category, with Bounce commenting that its fleet is seriously out of date. It doesn’t serve alcohol, so it got marked down for that, and its food offering was lambasted, too.

Panama’s Copa Airlines and Air China also ranked among the lowest, with scores of 6.71 and 7.14 respectively. Their poor entertainment options and terrible customer service were repeatedly mentioned by customers.

Want to know which other carriers are good (and which ones suck)? Here are the ten best airlines for business flights in the world:

  1. Singapore Airlines (9.57)
  2. Qatar Airways (9.29)
  3. Cathay Pacific (9.00)
  4. Turkish Airlines (8.86)
  5. Etihad Airways (8.71)
  6. Asiana (8.57)
  7. Japan Airlines (8.57)
  8. All Nippon Airways (ANA) (8.57)
  9. Air New Zealand (8.43)
  10. Thai Airways (8.43)

And here are the ten worst:

  1. Egyptair (5.71)
  2. Copa Airlines (6.71)
  3. Air China (7.14)
  4. Royal Air Maroc (7.29)
  5. Ethiopian Airlines (7.43)
  6. Iberia (7.43)
  7. Kenya Airways (7.43)
  8. American Airlines (7.57)
  9. LOT - Polish Airlines (7.57)
  10. Royal Jordanian (7.57)

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