The Cranky Network Awards Are Only 10 Weeks Away and We Need Your Nominations

Cranky Network Awards

The 2023 Cranky Network Awards presented by Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport is only 10 weeks away, and it’s time to start getting excited. (This, of course, assumes you weren’t already excited, which we find hard to believe.) We will be descending on the Valley of the Sun to award the best in airline network planning in the US and Canada on Thursday, February 23. But before we get there, we need some help from you.

Each year, we have our core award categories — the ones you know and love like Sexiest New Route and the big one, Most Improved Network — but we also have to respond to the trends in the industry over the previous year by swapping some old categories out for new ones.

Though the full list has yet to be finalized, there are two categories — one new and one legacy — for which we’d like to enlist your help in choosing nominees this year. Those are:

Most Clever Flight Number

This category rewards the art of choosing flight numbers. Since we are in our third year, we aren’t looking for the basic “flight 1492 goes to Columbus” kind of thing. For example, last year, United won for using 510 on its new Newark – Rome flight to match the year the Roman republic got its start.

Please submit your nominations in the comments section or by emailing

Best Airport Partner

This is a new category, and we really need help from you network planners out there. (We know you’re reading, say it with pride.) You work with airports every single day, and some are great partners while others… are not quite great. We want to hear which airports deserve to be held up on a pedestal for doing it right.

Please submit your nominations by emailing (or just emailing whatever address you have for me on file.)

The 2023 show is shaping up to be another great one. Airlines who have confirmed their attendance so far for this year include Alaska, Allegiant, American, Cape Air, Delta, Denver Air Connection, Flair, Landline (yes, it counts as an airline, damnit), Southwest, Spirit, Sun Country, and United with several more expected to be added on once they learn if they’ve been nominated or not.

We have a great group of sponsors already signed on for 2023 with room for only a couple more. Thanks to Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport for being our presenting sponsor and host this year AND for promising that this event will far exceed the energy and excitement generated by that little football game that will be played in town just a couple weeks earlier.

Sponsors already on-board for this year include The Arizona Office of Tourism, Boeing, Cirium, IDEMIA, Medjet, Oakland International Airport, Pittsburgh International Airport, and Visit Phoenix. If you’re interested in being a sponsor of the 2023 Cranky Network Awards, contact us at

While we won’t be selling tickets publicly to the show, we are still planning to do a limited number of auction tickets. Just keep your eyes on the blog to learn when that happens. And if you can’t make it this year, well, that’s a shame. But know that we are already working hard to secure a site for the 2024 show and hope to be able to announce that at the 2023 event.

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4 comments on “The Cranky Network Awards Are Only 10 Weeks Away and We Need Your Nominations

  1. Assuming the event is taking place at or near the airport, is there a chance there are hotel discounts for those of us who will attend from out of state? Hotels in FEB in Phoenix are pricey.

    1. Catherine – We are working on seeing how many extra rooms we will have at the host hotel downtown, but it’s still not cheap. This is peak time of the year in Phoenix, but I will say that since it’s downtown and not in the resort areas, there are much more affordable options around.

  2. Back in the day, F9 had a DEN-Idaho Falls (IDA) flight with the number 447 – a nod to the nuclear-related fatality at the Idaho Laboratory in 1961. Uranium 238 has a half life of 4.47×10^9. Obscure but fun.

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