Study: Air issues keep one in five travelers from fulfilling trip

5 Sep

Project 365 #339: 051210 Stranded!

Study: Air issues keep one in five travelers from fulfilling trip

Airline delays and cancellations keep almost one in
five travelers from fulfilling their trip, and the airline industry
needs to take a fresh look at the way it handles these events, says a
new study released today by PhoCusWright and Amadeus.

“Passengers First: Re-Thinking Irregular Operations” argues that the airlines need a more customer-centric approach.

need to communicate better about what is happening and provide more
alternative choices for travelers, taking into account the individual
reasons they are traveling to help get them where they want to go.

study found that delayed or canceled flights kept 18% of all passengers
worldwide, and a third of all passengers in China, from fulfilling the
purpose of a trip booked in the past year, and that the most common
frustration was insufficient communication.

The study
interviewed leading academics, industry trade organizations, global
airlines, and 2,800 travelers from Australia, Brazil, China, the U.K.
and the U.S.

Global airline passengers’ most common frustrations
1. There was insufficient communication about what was happening.
2. I was not offered any compensation.
3. There was conflicting communication about what was happening.
4. I was not able to fully achieve the original purpose of my trip due to the flight issue.
5. I had to pay additional costs for alternative arrangements.

Key findings from the report:

Deliver a standard service approach to disruptions: Airlines should
consider incorporating a standard service approach to deal with
passenger itinerary changes. When severe events occur, airlines with
such an approach in place merely extend their processes to a larger
number of travellers rather than attempt to implement a new, reactive

• Offer “intelligent re-accommodation”: Automated
re-accommodation technology may provide efficiencies for the operational
staff, but it does not always solve the underlying passenger itinerary
disruptions. Airlines may want to implement an intelligent one-click
solution that empowers passengers to choose alternatives most relevant
to their needs. Airlines should also consider investing in systems to
gain a greater understanding of each passenger’s preferences and reasons
for travelling, including passengers who book through indirect

• Provide transparent communication: In every market
surveyed, except China, insufficient communication was cited as
passengers’ top frustration. Introducing an integrated,
cross-departmental approach to customer service will enable airlines to
provide authoritative, personalized, proactive communication.

Moderate delays hurt the industry more than big ticket disruption: One
of the greatest challenges facing airlines is not major weather, but
rather the far more regular moderate delays of four hours or ess that
matter most to customers. In all markets, at least 50% of travllers have
experienced a moderate delay on one or more flights in the past 12
months, with this figure highest in China (74%) and Brazil (67%).
Instances of significant delay are far less common.

• Travellers
are increasingly venting frustration via social media: Globally, around
one third of travellers surveyed said they had posted comments about
delays to their friends on social networks such as Twitter and Facebook,
with higher numbers sharing experiences amongst their immediate family
or friendship groups using other means. The study calls on airlines to
try to understand the impact of social comments made in relation to

To view the report go to

Thursday, September 5, 2013


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