Something In the Air
More people take to the skies as aircraft travel becomes more accessible, more vulnerable to timely internet pricing and with more variations in the quality and approach to service than ever before. Just ponder about the following scenarios and reflect on whether you have experienced them before, especially in the past five years. 1. Cabin crew are not well trained to communicate with passengers or if they do, seem to be not professional in the way they swagger around the aisles between seated passengers. 2. You are asked to take up some dish you rather not want in a full service airline, as cabin crew advises of the lack of availability after they serve you rather late for some reason. 3. Duty free shopping seems to be fast tracked shortly after take off, instead of being made available after the first meal and before the second meal on a long haul flight. 4. Passengers are not offered immigration arrival cards on a timely basis, especially for destination countries that require such cards of all arriving passengers, apart from those in transit. 5. Checking in lounges do not display clearly the destination cities of flights to be boarded. 6. Check in counters can change on an arbitrary basis even in front of long queues of passengers. 7. Some economy class conditions of specific airlines still look and feel the same as thirty years ago. 8. A few airlines expect much from their ground crew and cabin crew and this shows in their ability to attract loyal passengers even if their prices are higher than competitor airlines. 9. The seats of a budget airline can be much cleaner than that of some full fledged airlines. 10. Airlines offering self check in and printing of boarding passes for passengers can vary in getting customers line up more than once. 11. Some airlines do make very interesting safety information videos for their passengers before take off, whilst others still revert to demos by attending cabin crew. 12. An airline offers food not packed in their own country, even if it boasts of being a national icon. 13. Aircraft washrooms seem to slide in cleanliness the later a flight progresses, but I know of one airline that requires its cabin crew to refresh and clean up such places on a regular basis during a long haul flight - whilst their competitors do not. 14. There are individuals who do good work for their employer airlines, only to see such good will destroyed by some of their less well trained colleagues. 15. Offering gourmet food on business class may not be sufficient to justify the significantly extra charges. 16. Some airlines just want turnover of passengers whilst a few others offer unique positive experiences. 17. It is much appreciated to have early check in facilities from certain airlines at specific major airports around the world. 18. A sense of humour on both part of passengers and cabin crew do go a long way to result in a more pleasant flight. 19. Full fledged airlines are still intent on focusing on food but can change innovatively for the future. 20. Responsiveness by airline staff for late checking passengers can make a huge difference in how customers perceive an airline. Whether you take Qantas, Emirates, Air Asia, Singapore Airlines, Air New Zealand, Etihad, Cathay Pacific, Malaysian Airlines, Scoot , United, Thai Airways or British Airways, do try to match your experience with the numbered scenarios listed above.