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China’s largest and only mainland airline to receive the high ranking

Hainan Airlines wins coveted 4-star rating from Skytrax

Hainan Airlines, Mainland China’s largest private carrier, has been certified a 4-star airline by the quality rating and research firm Skytrax. Hainan is the only mainland Chinese airline to receive the coveted ranking, and one of just 30 airlines in the world that meets the rigorous quality criteria, according to London-based Skytrax.

The certification is for the 2009-2010 ranking period. The Skytrax 4-Star Airline cup and certificate was presented to Hainan Airlines CEO Wang Yingming at a formal ceremony at the Marriott Hotel Beijing.

“This 4-Star Airline Certification is a coveted seal of quality approval that an airline receives in recognition of its front-line product and service quality,” said Skytrax CEO Edward Plaisted. “What we found with Hainan Airlines is an airline that is now delivering a truly world-class package, but having the strength and conviction to deliver this with the very best attributes of the Chinese culture and Chinese hospitality.”

The rating confirms Hainan’s arrival on the international stage and recognizes the rise of China’s national enterprises in creating world-class brands in the new global economy. A 4-star ranking means the airline provides a superior standard of product across all travel categories, and meets the qualifying high standards of service both onboard and at the airport.

Skytrax officials noticed that this commitment to reassessment and improvement is represented in the airline’s constant efforts to improve across every aspect of the customer experience. In an era of eroding customer service, from increased fees to unresponsive customer service, and dusty suggestion boxes, Hainan guests not only see a rapid response to their feedback, but also could encounter North America General Manager Joel Chusid or another company executive at the gate, proactively looking for that honest personal assessment of the customer’s experience.

Chusid knows many of the airline’s frequent flyers by their first names, preferences and habits. “Every guest has different needs and we’re there to make sure every need is fulfilled,” Chusid said. “We want every guest to have a personal experience with our great service, regardless of whether they are flying first class or economy.”

China’s national table tennis team deputy leader Qiu Wenli and Olympic champion Ma Lin were on hand to celebrate Hainan’s Skytrax award. Qiu and Ma are loyal and frequent Hainan passengers. Coaches and athletes from the Chinese national table tennis team often take Hainan Airlines flights to fly around China and the world to compete.

“We are encouraged by this great honor. Hainan Airlines will continue to work hard, develop scientifically, strive for excellent quality, a first-class service standard and a 5-star rating,” said Chen Feng, chairman of Hainan’s parent company, HNA Group.

The certification is for the 2009-2010 ranking period. The Skytrax 4-Star Airline cup and certificate was presented to Hainan Airlines CEO Wang Yingming at a formal ceremony at the Marriott Hotel Beijing. Hainan Airlines is the first airline in mainland China to earn the 4-Star Airline certification.

Star rankings reflect the customer experience-not just the platform of product standards offered by an airline such as cabin seating, in-flight entertainment and catering, but the assessment of service quality- using a rating system made up of more than 800 different areas of product and service delivery for each airline.

Founded in 1993, Hainan Airlines has grown into a successful, international airline offering personalized and gracious service. In a recent Skytrax audit, Hainan Airlines quickly and successfully completed upgrading its service quality, and isn’t far away from its goal of becoming a 5-star airline, the highest rating available.

Skytrax also rated Hainan the best airline in China in 2008, and the company has obtained the “Customer Satisfaction Award” from the Chinese civil aviation industry 10 years straight since 1998. As part of its award-winning service to Business Class passengers, the airline offers complimentary, pre-arranged limousine service transfers in Beijing, lie-flat seats with a massage mode, sumptuous meals and a global wine selection, a world-class, on-demand entertainment system and cabin attendants trained in gracious hospitality.

Hainan has a large network in China and also flies to Europe, the Middle East, North America and Africa. Last year, the airline entered the U.S. market with the only non-stop service between Seattle and mainland China. China is the largest trade partner of both Washington and Oregon. The airline provides service to passengers throughout the United States in conjunction with airline partners such as Alaska Airlines. The Pacific Northwest is especially well served via the Seattle gateway.

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