The Crystal Cabin Awards are open for entries


The 15th Crystal Cabin Awards are fast approaching, with the Association preparing to recognise and honour the best new ideas for the aircraft cabin. As always there are eight categories for the awards, but there have been some changes to the categories for 2022 to reflect the new challenges of aviation.

The Crystal Cabin Award is the world’s leading prize in the field of cabin innovations and on-board products. In 2020, the two special categories of ‘Green and Safe Air Travel’ and ‘Judges’ Choice’ were awarded in response to the challenges of air travel during the pandemic.

Moving forward, standalone categories for ‘Sustainable Cabin’ and ‘Health & Safety’ have now been established for the industry award. The Cabin Concepts category will now also incorporate visionary concepts for the aircraft cabin, while the ‘Inflight Entertainment and Connectivity’ category is being expanded to include ‘Digital Services’.

If you wish to submit an entry for consideration by the Crystal Cabin Award panel, you can upload it at The deadline for entries is 6 February, 2022.

In 2022, the Crystal Cabin Award prizegiving ceremony will take place as an in-person event again for the first time since the pandemic began, with the awards presented at Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg (14 – 16 June 2022). The judging panel will also meet again in person at the start of the event to evaluate the entries (the past two years have involved an online judging process).

The eight Crystal Cabin Award categories for 2022:

Cabin Concepts

This category addresses aircraft cabin designs with a significant degree of innovation, as well as aircraft cabin designs for tomorrow. Whole cabins can be submitted, or sections, such as first class, business class, economy, etc. Cabin concept entries can be submitted by airlines, aircraft and cabin manufacturers, design companies and MROs. Applicants need to demonstrate why their product is innovative and what differentiates it from existing cabin concepts.

Cabin Systems

This category recognises all new products that deliver a major benefit, especially for airlines. Examples include new seat structures, galleys, lavatories, trolleys, air conditioning, electrical systems, waste & potable water systems, acoustics and more. Aside from the level of innovation, the ease of implementation will also be judged. This category does not comprise digital systems such as ‘smart cabins’ (see IFEC & Digital Services), or solutions specifically focusing on passenger comfort (see Passenger Comfort)

Health & Safety

This category covers all cabin-related concepts and products that visibly demonstrate that they minimise security problems, safety hazards, onboard health and hygiene issues, and/or significantly improve physical well-being in the aircraft. Depending on the field of application, entries may focus on passengers, crew or cargo.

IFEC & Digital Services

This category addresses the fast-growing range of digital products and services in the aviation industry. Entries will need to prove their technological superiority against competing products and may include inflight entertainment solutions, connectivity elements such as antennas and wi-fi, customer-centred concepts such as passenger apps, and even entire software solutions that create a smart and connected cabin.

Material & Components

This category covers the development of new materials, new material applications or a new combination of materials for cabin systems which can cut production costs and maximise usability and efficiency. Entries can be an innovative, single technical component or material, but not a fully developed product like a seat.

Passenger Comfort

Travel comfort is an important business factor for airlines striving to attract customers. Entries in this category must specifically demonstrate how they improve passenger comfort within the cabin. An innovation that is of general use to a large group of individuals may well achieve higher marks due to its increased effectiveness for an airline´s success. This category includes items such as seats, lavatories, bins, partitions, lighting solutions, linings, premium, business, first class products, VIP products, etc. For products with a benefit more towards improved operations and performance, please also see the Cabin Systems category.

Sustainable Cabin

Aviation has made a commitment to become a zero-emission industry within the next 30 years. This challenge will require a great amount of thought and innovation to be invested into every aspect of aviation, including the cabin and the passenger experience. Aside from the industry commitment, customers are becoming more sensitive to sustainability issues in travel, requiring operators to take action. The Crystal Cabin Award Association has responded to this development with the Sustainable Cabin category, looking for entries that can prove a significant impact on the ecological impact of aviation, and contribute to the ultimate transformation of air travel toward a zero-emission industry.


This category enables college and university students to present their visions for innovative products and concepts for aircraft interiors. Entries should reflect the idea of making flying more comfortable, smart or ecological. Blue-sky thinking is encouraged, but consideration must be given to certification, practicality and economics. By submitting an application in this category students can gain important contacts within the industry to help their professional future.

International exposure

The 27 expert members of the Judging Panel will assess hundreds of entries, narrowing them down over stages to decide three finalists in each category. The finalists then have the opportunity to present their entries to the panel at the Final Viewing in Hamburg. They also have the opportunity to meet Adam Gavine at the viewing!

the judging panel on stage at the 2019 ceremony

The judging panel on stage at the 2019 awards ceremony

Winning a Crystal Cabin Award is true recognition of innovation, by a global community of specialists.

The Entry form and rules, an overview of 2021’s winners, and a detailed explanation of all categories for the Crystal Cabin Award are available online from the official awards website.

Submissions may be lodged until 6 February 2022. The awards ceremonies for the eight main categories and two special categories of the Crystal Cabin Award 2020/2021 can be found on the Hamburg Aviation YouTube channel.

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About Author


Ever since his first flight on a TriStar, Adam has loved air travel, and since becoming editor of the Aircraft Interiors International brand he has really enjoyed the opportunity to be involved with the latest aircraft and airline products before they are even launched. Adam co-ordinates the running of the magazine, from commissioning articles and artwork, to ensuring that high standards of quality are maintained, as well as managing online content. Adam is proud to sit on the jury of the Crystal Cabin Awards and to have laid on the bed in Etihad's Residence.

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