JetblueAre you one of the millions who follow their favourite airline on Twitter?

You should. Because airlines have fast become THE place to find great comedy online.

Every Friday morning, German airline Lufthansa posts a blooper reel of their flight crew’s funniest screwups of the week. It’s truly hilarious. And Monday through Thursday, Qantas posts Top 10 lists that are sharper and funnier than David Letterman’s Top 10 lists.

Okay, okay. I’m sorry to say that none of the above is true. Most airlines are pretty straightlaced (usually they Tweet about last-minute getaway sales, new customer service initiatives, and flight delays/storm updates). The most exciting thing you’ll read might be “Yes, our flight #204 did crash into the ocean but every Canadian survived. Your family’s safe! [if they’re Canadian].”

Airlines may not be entertaining. But at least they now understand that Twitter and Facebook are key channels for them to talk with their customers.

So which airlines have the most Twitter followers? Read on, I have a list for you…

A US social media insight firm, Birdsong, made a list of the 100 airlines with the most Twitter followers.

Here are the top 10 most followed airlines:

  1. Jet Blue (1,677,149) @JetBlue
  2. SouthWest (1,356,935) @SouthwestAir
  3. Air Asia (428,320) @AirAsia
  4. British Airways – Net followers of both their Twitter accounts (397,641) @BritishAirways; @British_Airways
  5. American Airlines (390,274) @AmericanAir
  6. Philipine Airlines (372,374) @flyPAL
  7. TAM Airlines – (355,562) @TAMAirlines
  8. Delta (343,243) @Delta
  9. Virgin America ((334,086) @virginamerica
  10. KLM (Royal Dutch Airlines) (286,128) @klm

Here’s what JetBlue’s Twitter account looks like:

JetBlue on Twitter

Meanwhile: no Canadian airline made the top 10.

Westjet ranked 14th with 157,455, ranking just ahead of United and well ahead of Delta. Not too shabby…but then again, as the Summer Olympics keep proving, Canadians shouldn’t be satisfied with finishing out of the medals.

However, in a really strange omission, this survey didn’t include Air Canada.

I guess either Air Canada has so few followers, they ranked less than lowly 99th-placed Air Mauritius’s 253 followers and weren’t worthy of inclusion. Either that, or Air Canada DOESN’T HAVE A TWITTER ACCOUNT which would be truly weird.

[turns out neither is true…as of this morning, Air Canada had 43,608 Twitter followers]

Below are the remaining 90 airlines plus links to each of their Twitter feeds:
British Airways N.A. ( 225,105 )
US Airways ( 215,347 )
British Airways ( 184,955 )
WestJet ( 157,455 )
Malaysia Airlines ( 137,332 )
United ( 123,547 )
Balta Air Lines ( 123,517 )
Lufthansa (DE) ( 102,104 )
Virgin Atlantic ( 79,670 )
Virgin Australia ( 65,429 )
Alaska Airlines ( 58,758 )
Delta ( 55,900 )
easyJet ( 37,865 )
Vueling ( 37,060 )
Spirit Airlines ( 36,850 )
Jetstar Airways ( 34,001 )
Lufthansa (USA) ( 31,613 )
Swiss Intl Air Lines ( 30,646 )
Cathay Pacfic ( 28,966 )
Kenya Airways ( 28,478 )
Qatar Airways ( 28,466 )
Emirates ( 26,386 )
Pegasus Airlines ( 24,400 )
Air Baltic ( 21,704 )
Frontier Airrlines ( 20,100 )
Alitalia ( 18,642 )
Qantas Airways ( 17,153 )
Garuda Indonesia ( 15,549 )
South African Airlines (USA) ( 14,159 )
Asiana Airlines ( 14,051 )
Gulf Air ( 13,324 )
Iceland Air ( 13,286 )
Korean Air ( 13,240 )
aeroflot ( 13,069 )
Tiger Airways ( 12,553 )
SAS ( 12,188 )
German Wings ( 11,697 )
KLM ( 10,811 )
ElAl (USA) ( 10,743 )
SpanAir ( 10,147 )
TAP ( 9,910 )
Frontier Airlines ( 9,844 )
Air France UK ( 9,758 )
Qantas Travelinsider ( 9,576 )
Thai Airways (AUS) ( 9,246 )
Flybe ( 9,066 )
Etihad (deals) ( 8,748 )
Czech Airlines ( 8,424 )
Lufthansa (Brazil) ( 8,132 )
Air New Zealand ( 7,826 )
Horizon Air ( 7,008 )
Etihad ( 6,924 )
LOT Polish Airlines ( 6,856 )
BMI Baby ( 6,649 )
El Al ( 5,838 )
Iceland Express ( 5,831 )
Lufthansa (Latina) ( 5,735 )
Estonian Air ( 5,725 )
Monarch ( 5,534 )
South African Airlines ( 5,173 )
Pacific Blue ( 5,150 )
Eastern Airways ( 4,492 )
flyseair ( 4,385 )
AirTran Airways ( 4,365 )
Skywest Airlines ( 3,965 )
SeaPort Airlines ( 3,721 )
Meridiana – Air Italy ( 3,707 )
fly NIKI ( 3,468 )
Air North ( 3,384 )
Cathay Pacific (UK) ( 3,326 )
Atlantic Airlines ( 3,283 )
Mokulele Airlines ( 3,148 )
Air Southwest ( 3,090 )
Air Southwest ( 3,089 )
Air France (Ireland) ( 3,059 )
Hainan Airlines ( 2,733 )
Meridinia ( 2,644 )
Austrian Airlines ( 2,561 )
Cathay Pacific (USA) ( 2,430 )
easyJet (Spain) ( 1,702 )
Cirrus Airlines ( 1,608 )
Cathay Pacific (AUS) ( 1,545 )
Hawaiian Airlines ( 1,536 )
Air France (Singapore) ( 1,438 )
Anubis Airlines ( 1,420 )
Sri Lankan Airlines ( 1,211 )
Air France ( 1,188 )
Click Air ( 1,053 )
Aerosvit Airlines ( 955 )
Jet4You ( 805 )
Vision Airlines ( 718 )
Etihad (Help) ( 655 )
Caribbean Airlines ( 570 )
Cathay Pacfici (India) ( 412 )
China Airlines ( 396 )
Cathay Pacific (SA) ( 314 )
Air Mauritius ( 253 )
Lan Colombia ( Protected )

Which airlines do you follow on Twitter and why? Let me know in the comments below!

— Ken Hegan


BING: how to be successful on Twitter

Read more of Ken’s MSN travel stories here and follow him to victory on Twitter

Source: Birdsong