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Global Traveler Announces 13th Annual GT Tested Reader Survey Awards

by Kimberly Krol Inlander

Dec 1, 2016
Press Releases

The results are in! For the 13th consecutive year, Global Traveler conducted its GT Tested Reader Survey, asking frequent business and luxury travelers to name the best in a variety of travel-related categories. More than 22,000 people responded. Global Traveler’s inaugural awards were celebrated in 2004.

The survey honors airlines, hotels, loyalty programs and travel-related products in more than 80 categories. GT’s distinguished readers vote for their favorites in the world of travel in an open-ended survey running in the magazine and online from January to August each year. The results of the survey are announced in the December 2016 issue, available now.

GT readers are frequent premium travelers averaging 13 international and 13 domestic round-trip flights a year, with an average household income of $372,900 per year. Global Traveler’s elite readers spend an average 50 nights per year in hotels. A whopping 63 percent regularly travel in business class.

This year’s roster of highly regarded winners includes Qatar Airways (Best Airline for International First Class, Best First-Class Seat Design and Best Airline in the Middle East), TAP Portugal (Best Airline for New Service Launch and Best Airline in Europe) and Hainan Airlines (Fastest-Growing Airline in Asia and Best Airline in China). Other top winners are United MileagePlus (Best Overall Frequent-Flyer Program and Best Frequent-Flyer Bonus Program), The Ritz-Carlton (Best International Hotel Chain, Best Domestic Hotel Chain, Best Hotel Club Floor and Best Hotel Website), Hyatt Gold Passport (Best Frequent-Stay Customer Service, Americas), Ireland (Best Tourism Destination) and Inside Access from Chase (Best Credit Card Special Events).

“Celebrating 13 years of honoring the very best in travel is quite an accomplishment,” said Francis X. Gallagher, publisher and CEO, Global Traveler. “As our awards remain some of the most sought-after in the industry, it’s a testament to our readers, an elite group of well-traveled, savvy frequent flyers. Each year we see a mix of perennial winners and newfound favorites gracing the winners’ list, but all have one thing in common and that is a true dedication to serving travelers. Congratulations to all the 2016 winners.”

This year’s winners will be feted at a cocktail reception Dec. 13, at The Peninsula Beverly Hills in Beverly Hills, Calif. For more information, check out the December 2016 issue of Global Traveler or visit our website at globaltravelerusa.com. A complete recap of the night’s festivities will be featured in the March 2016 issue.

A complete list of winners is as follows:

Best Overall Airline in the World
Singapore Airlines

Best Airline Alliance
oneworld

Best Aircraft Type
Airbus A380

Best Airline Website
jetblue.com

Best Airline for International First Class
Qatar Airways

Best Airline for Business Class
Singapore Airlines

Best Airline for Domestic First Class
American Airlines

Best Airline for Onboard Service
Asiana Airlines

Best Airline for Flight Attendants
Asiana Airlines

Best Airline Cuisine
Alitalia

Best Airline for Security
EL AL Israel Airlines

Best Business-Class Seat Design
China Airlines

Best First-Class Seat Design
Qatar Airways

Best Airline for New Service Launch
TAP Portugal (BOS to LIS)

Fastest-Growing Airline in Asia
Hainan Airlines

Best Overall Frequent-Flyer Program
United MileagePlus

Best Frequent-Flyer Elite-Level Program
Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles Pualani Platinum Membership

Best Frequent-Flyer Bonus Program
United MileagePlus

Best Frequent-Flyer Award Redemption
LifeMiles (Avianca TACA)

Best Frequent-Flyer Customer Service, Americas
Avianca

Best Airline in North America
Air Canada

Best Airline to South America
LATAM Airlines Group

Best Airline in Mexico
Aeromexico

Best Airline to Australia and New Zealand
Qantas Airways

Best Airline in the South Pacific
Air Tahiti Nui

Best Airline in Europe
TAP Portugal

Best Airline in Eastern Europe
Aeroflot

Best Airline in Africa
South African Airways

Best Airline in the Middle East
Qatar Airways

Best Airline in North Asia (excluding China)
China Airlines

Best Airline in China
Hainan Airlines

Best Airline in Central/South Asia and India
Air India

Best Airline to Japan
All Nippon Airways

Best Trans-Atlantic Airline
Lufthansa

Best Trans-Pacific Airline
United Airlines

Best Airport in the World
Singapore Changi Airport

Best Airport in North America
Chicago O’Hare International Airport

Best Airport Lounges
Delta Sky Club

Best Airport Staff/Gate Agents
EVA Air

Best Airport Dining
Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport

Best Duty-Free Shops
Dubai Duty Free

Best Individual Hotel in the World
Burj Al Arab Jumeirah

Best International Hotel Chain
The Ritz-Carlton

Best Domestic Hotel Chain
The Ritz-Carlton

Best Lifestyle Hotel
Andaz

Best Airport Hotel
Grand Hyatt Incheon

Best MICE Hotel
Lotte Hotel, Seoul

Best Hotel Club Floor
The Ritz-Carlton Club Level

Best Hotel Website
ritzcarlton.com

Best New Luxury Hotel in Asia
Four Seasons Seoul

Best Hotel Rewards Program in the World
IHG Rewards Club

Best Frequent-Stay Elite-Level Program
Hilton HHonors Diamond

Best Frequent-Stay Customer Service, Americas
Hyatt Gold Passport

Best Frequent-Stay Bonus Program
Omni Select Guest

Best Frequent-Stay Award Redemption
Marriott Rewards

Best Hotel in the United States
The Peninsula Beverly Hills

Best European Hotel Chain
St. Regis

Best Hotel Chain in Asia
Conrad Hotels

Best Hotel in South Korea
Lotte Hotel, Seoul

Best Hotel Chain in Latin America
Sheraton Hotels & Resorts

Best Hotel Chain in Mexico
Fiesta Americana Hotels & Resorts

Best Hotel Chain in the Middle East
Jumeirah International

Best Overseas Delivery Program
Volvo

Best Car Rental Company
Hertz

Best Tourism Destination
Ireland

Best MICE City
Seoul

Best WiFi Service
Boingo Wireless

Best Wireless Service in the World
Verizon Wireless

Best Noise-Canceling Headset
Sony Digital Noise-Canceling Headphones

Best Luggage Brand
Briggs & Riley

Best Photographic Equipment
Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD Lens

Best Credit Card
United MileagePlus Club Card from Chase

Best Small-Business Credit Card
The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card from JPMorgan

Best Credit Card Special Events
Inside Access from Chase

Best Credit Card Rewards Program
United MileagePlus Club Card from Chase

Best Frequent-Stay Affinity Credit Card
Marriott Rewards Visa Signature Card from Chase

Best Frequent-Stay Affinity Credit Card Promotions
Hilton HHonors Card from American Express

Best Frequent-Stay Affinity Credit Card Benefits
Hilton HHonors Card from American Express

Best Frequent-Stay Affinity Credit Card Redemptions
The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card from JPMorgan

Best Frequent-Flyer Affinity Credit Card
Alaska Airlines Visa Signature Card from Bank of America

Best Frequent-Flyer Affinity Credit Card Promotions
Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select MasterCard

Best Frequent-Flyer Affinity Credit Card Benefits
Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express

Best Frequent-Flyer Affinity Credit Card Redemptions
United MileagePlus Explorer Card from Chase

Best Cruise Line Affinity Credit Card
Celebrity Cruises Visa Signature Credit Card

Global Traveler will also recognize the following Wines on the Wing award winners at the reception: Singapore Airlines (Best International First Class Wines on the Wing, Best Champagne International First Class, Best International Business Class Wines on the Wing and Best Champagne International Business Class); British Airways (Best Champagne International First Class, tie); Emirates (Best White Wine International First Class); American Airlines (Best Red Wine International First Class, Best Red Wine International Business Class, Best North American Wines on the Wing, Best North American Sparkling Wine, Best North American White Wine and Best North American Red Wine); TAP Portugal (Best White Wine International Business Class); and Star Alliance (Best Alliance Wines on the Wing). The results of the Wines on the Wing airline wine survey were announced in the August 2016 issue.

About the Survey
Global Traveler conducted an open-ended survey of its readers to determine the best in more than 80 travel-related categories. The survey was conducted from Jan. 1, 2016, to Aug. 31, 2016. Questionnaires were available in subscriber copies of the magazine, online at globaltravelerusa.com/gt-tested-awards-ballot and through direct mail and email. Only questionnaires with more than 50 percent of the questions answered were considered. An outside accounting firm, Citrin Cooperman LLP, tabulated the results. Employees of the magazine and members of the travel industry were barred from participation.

About Global Traveler
Global Traveler, the only AAM-audited U.S.-based magazine for the international business traveler, is a business travel and lifestyle publication with an AAM-audited paid circulation of 111,000+.

About FXEXpress Publications, Inc.
FXExpress Publications, Inc., based in Yardley, Pa., is a privately held company publishing Global Traveler, China Global Traveler, eFlyer USA, eFlyer Asia, Trazee Travel and several annuals; and also operating globaltravelerusa.com, globaltravelerusa.com/blog, china-globaltraveler.com and trazeetravel.com.

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