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HomeAfrica2012 Family Friendly Airline Award isn’t just kidding around
Second annual award organized by Kids First Fund

2012 Family Friendly Airline Award isn’t just kidding around

It’s the flight every frequent traveler fears – a fussy infant or an unhappy child brings misery to the captive community on a long flight. Some airlines seemingly leave this outcome to chance, while others create child-focused programs to prevent it. Savvy airline executives know they can serve their highest-paying passengers best when the littlest passengers are happy, entertained, and quiet.

The Kids First Fund introduced the Family Friendly Airline Award last year to identify carriers providing needed services and extra comfort for children and parents. Last year’s winner was Canada-based Air Transat and its Kids Club program. The airline was first selected as a finalist by a panel of five airline-industry judges and became the reward winner after receiving the most votes from thousands of Facebook fans.

The selection process for 2012 begins today by inviting airline executives to nominate their carrier for the award. A panel of travel industry leaders will choose five airline finalists from among the nominees. The list of airline finalists will be announced 01 March 2012 and travelers will then be invited to vote at the Kids First Fund page on Facebook. Polling will close 30 March 2012, which is the first day of the 8th annual International Online Travel Auction for Kids.

“Last year the Family Friendly Airline Award had a great list of finalists with airlines from all over the world,” said Jay Sorensen, president of the Kids First Fund. “The consumer response received through Facebook demonstrated strong support for programs that enhance travel for children and parents. These consumers are a loyal and powerful fan base for airlines that consider the needs of the youngest travelers.”

Airline executives are asked to submit nominations using the instructions provided at the Facebook page for the Kids First Fund.  Nomination requirements are simple: 1) the airline must describe why it deserves the distinction, and 2) there is a limit of one nomination per airline to be received by 20 February 2012.

The Kids First Fund is privileged to have its roster of five travel industry experts return as judges to select the five airline finalists for 2012:
– Mr. Peter Harbison, executive chairman of the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation.
– Ms. Lisa Moore, vice president of marketing for Travelzoo North America.
– Dr. John O’Connell, Department of Air Transport, Cranfield University (UK).
– Ms. Flo Lugli, executive vice president of marketing, Wyndham Hotel Group.
– Mr. Howard Putnam, motivational speaker and former CEO of Braniff Airlines and Southwest Airlines.

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Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales. She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.