SEATTLE, Sept. 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Airline Passenger Experience Association would like to congratulate the winners of the 2011 Passenger Choice Awards, announced this evening at APEX EXPO, the premier event for air travel experience professionals, held September 12-15 at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle.
Awards were handed out in 14 categories, including Best Overall Passenger Experience. 2011 marks the second year for the awards program, which has already become a benchmark for excellence in the airline passenger experience industry.
The Passenger Choice Awards, created by APEX and voted on by the traveling public, was designed to recognize the airlines for their service, products and innovations.
Winners are determined based solely on the votes of travelers -- with the Nielsen Company, a global leader in consumer information and measurement, tracking the voting. The awards program is entirely independent of any commercial influence, ensuring its neutrality. Since its launch last year, the Passenger Choice Awards survey has become increasingly popular with air travelers; participation has increased more than 100 percent over 2010.
The awards event was hosted by Peter Greenberg, CBS News Travel editor, multiple Emmy® Award winner and New York Times best-selling author of the Travel Detective series.
The winners of the 2011 Passenger Choice Awards are:
Best Overall Passenger Experience (Over 50 IFE EQUIPPED IN FLEET) -- Emirates
Best Overall Passenger Experience (Up to 50 IFE EQUIPPED IN FLEET) -- Virgin America
Best in Region: Africa -- South African Airways
Best in Region: Americas -- Virgin America
Best in Region: Asia and Australasia -- V Australia
Best in Region: Europe -- Virgin Atlantic
Best in Region: Middle East -- Emirates
Best Inflight Publication -- Avianca
Best IFE User Interface -- V Australia
Best Inflight Connectivity & Communications -- Oman Air
Best Inflight Video -- Virgin America
Best Cabin Ambiance -- JetBlue
Best Food & Beverage in conjunction with IFSA -- V Australia
Best Ground Experience -- Virgin America
Receiving the 2011 Lifetime Achievement Awards was Sue Pinfold, Executive Vice President IFE at Spafax, and the 2011 Outstanding Contribution Award winner was Ken Brady, Chief Engineer for Thales Avionics, Inc.
APEX also handed out two Avion Awards to member companies that have enjoyed tremendous success in their field and projects. These awards were judged by industry peers and members of the media.
Avion Award: Best Achievement in Technology
Thales for Smart Video Display Unit (SVDU-G4)
Avion Award: Best Single Achievement in Passenger Experience
Air New Zealand for the Skycouch Family Experience
About the Passenger Choice Awards
The Passenger Choice Awards were created by the Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) to give voice to airline passengers. APEX encompasses a network of professionals that are committed to providing an outstanding airline experience for passengers around the globe. For an opportunity to "Choose Who's in First," for 2012, visit www.passengerchoiceawards.com to vote and be sure to visit the Passenger Choice Awards fan page on Facebook.
The Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) encompasses a network of businesses and professionals that are committed to providing a world-class airline experience for passengers around the globe. Every day, APEX members are improving every aspect of the airline experience: from designing, building and installing seating, entertainment and communications systems on commercial aircraft, to airport lounges and inflight dining. Visit www.apex.aero for more information.