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The world's best airline is...

By Bryony Jones, CNN
updated 5:36 AM EDT, Wed June 19, 2013
Emirates has been voted the world's best airline, and best in-flight entertainment, by passengers at the annual Skytrax World Airline Awards. The awards are decided by 18.2 million passengers in 160 countries around the world. Emirates has been voted the world's best airline, and best in-flight entertainment, by passengers at the annual Skytrax World Airline Awards. The awards are decided by 18.2 million passengers in 160 countries around the world.
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STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Emirates named airline of the year at the Skytrax World Airline Awards
  • Awards were voted on by 18.2 million passengers from 160 countries around the world
  • Cathay Pacific cabin crew named world's best, Air Asia top budget airline

CNN's Bryony Jones is reporting from the 50th Paris Airshow. Follow her on Twitter and don't miss CNN's coverage of this year's Paris Airshow at Le Bourget.

Le Bourget, France (CNN) -- Emirates has been voted the world's best airline by passengers at the annual Skytrax World Airline Awards.

The awards -- decided by 18.2 million passengers in 160 countries around the world -- judge airlines on everything from the cleanliness of the cabin to the quality of the in-flight food and entertainment.

Dubai-based Emirates took the debut prize in 2001, and retained it in 2002, before missing out on the top spot for a decade.

Skytrax World Airline Awards 2013

Airline of the Year: Emirates

World's Best Cabin Staff: Cathay Pacific

World's Best Low-Cost Airline: Air Asia

Best Economy Class: Garuda Indonesia

Best Premium Economy: Air New Zealand

Best Business Class: Qatar Airways

Best First Class: Etihad Airways

Best In-Flight Entertainment: Emirates

Best Signature Dish: Malaysia Airlines' Satay Service

Now they're back to make it a hat-trick -- and the company's president, Tim Clark, puts their return to award-winning form down to one thing, "exteremely hard work."

"We've got 200 aircraft, 18,000 cabin crew and ground staff," he explained, admitting that with 200 aircraft and 18,000 cabin crew and ground staff the company's operations were "not easy, but you work hard at what you're doing, you deliver to people's expectations, and hopefully exceed those expectations."

Emirates was also named best airline in the Middle East, and won a third award for its in-flight entertainment system.

Cathay Pacific's cabin crew were crowned the world's best, while Air Asia took the prize for best low-cost airline. Japan's ANA won a new award for cabin cleanliness, as well as receiving a five-star airline rating.

John Slosar, CEO of Hong Kong-based Cathay Pacific said the win was recognition for the company's "fabulous team."

"We work very hard to make sure it's all about the team, not about individuals. We teach our crew not to just follow the rules, but to express themselves through their work, to offer service straight from the heart."

Test your knowledge of airline liveries

Presenting the awards, CNN's Richard Quest said consistency was key to the success of those crowned the best in the world.

"It's all about the ability to deliver a product every time -- every flight, for every passenger in every class."

The Skytrax World Airline Awards were established in 1999; they are compiled from the world's largest airline passenger satisfaction survey -- responses to questionnaires in English, Spanish, Chinese and Russian.

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