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National Service Awards from United and American Airlines

Regional airport receives high honors from two of the largest domestic carriers for exceptional service, while increasing passenger loads in 2017 and into 2018.

SANTA BARBARA, CA – March 5, 2018 ­-- Santa Barbara Airport (SBA) has been acknowledged with prestigious service awards from two major airline carriers.United Airlines announced Santa Barbara’s “depart differently” airport as one of three winners of the 2017 Quality First Award, for earning the highest points in its respective tier for combine performance across a variety of service markers. “Congratulations to SBA on this exceptional achievement. Your commitment to our customers and United’s overall operational successes is greatly appreciated,” United Airlines Operation leadership team.

For the first time, SBA also received Customer Cup Award from American Airlines. Customer Cups are categorized and awarded by market size from largest stations to smallest stations, according to flight activity. The award recognizes airport teams for their performance in serving customers at the airport across five primary customer touch points: departure dependability, turn flight dependability, baggage performance, customer feedback, and overall airport satisfaction. Simply put, American Airlines stated SBA won because, “They’re on time, customers love them, and they keep bags on track.”

On February 27, the airport held a special celebration with SBA’s American Airlines Envoy, where they presented Robert van Duin, general manager for American Airlines Envoy-SBA with the silver Customer Cup.

“These honors mean a lot to our airport and our carrier teams,” stated Hazel Johns, airport director. “This has been a busy year for SBA as we have increased passenger loads by 8% while navigating the natural disasters that have affected our entire region. We are proud that we have been able to keep customer service up-front and center.”


Santa Barbara Airport served 711,000 passengers in 2017 and is the 13th largest airport in California. SBA’s architecturally-praised and LEED certified new airline terminal opened in 2011 and features state-of-the-art amenities and efficient passenger security screening. The airport is served by American Airlines, Alaska Airlines and United Airlines with 22 daily departures to seven non-stop destinations – Dallas, Denver, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Portland, San Francisco and Seattle. The airport resides on the site of a former World War II Marine Air Station, next to the Pacific Ocean and the University of California at Santa Barbara, and is conveniently located just 7 miles west of downtown Santa Barbara.  SBA is a self-sustaining enterprise operated by the City of Santa Barbara.

Last Updated: Aug 22, 2018
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