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Going the Miles to Strive For Customer Loyalty in the Airlines Industry

May 18, 2018

The globalization phenomena have sparked the sheer volume of international travel. People are opting for transportation modes which drastically reduce travel time. As a result, air travel is gaining preference and popularity over rail, road, and sea routes. However, after the global economic crisis in 2008, the airline industry suffered huge losses for which it had to undergo an immense transformation. The airline industry has soon realized that customer loyalty is quintessential to keep its revenues on track. Here are some of the tactics used by the airline industry to improve customer loyalty:

Personalization

The airline industry strives to provide its customers with a more personalized experience. They rely heavily on technology and data to learn more about their customers. For instance, if you visit an airline’s website and purchase a ticket to Amsterdam, but forgo a rental car and hotel to stay with your friends to take part in Tomorrowland. In the background, the airline company has acquired quite a lot of information on your travel preferences and thus knows if you like to travel alone and whether in the economy or first class and what kind of seats you prefer. Since the passenger opted out of car rental, next time it can just skip it and offer travel discounts instead.

Premium Economy Air Cabins

Today, flying is more than just getting from point A to point B, it’s sometimes more of an experience. So depending on the experience you had, you would decide whether to continue with the same airline or choose a different carrier. Leading airlines are adding few perks to their economy class by introducing premium economy and providing comfortable seating, which includes large armrests, 19-inch wide seats, footrests, and more shoulder space. It is no wonder that premium economy is the fastest growing cabin sector. In order to boost customer loyalty, Scandinavian Airlines is investing to find out how to enhance passenger sleep and reduce jet lag. The airlines has included breathable wool in its seating, built-in features that mimic sunrise and sunset, and LED-based mood lighting.


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Reward Programs

Reward programs like frequent flyer are nothing new in the airline industry when it comes to boosting customer loyalty. The concept of the rewards program is relatively still the same, however, many airlines are restructuring their frequent flyer programs based on revenue instead of the number of miles they have travelled. For instance, in the year 2012, United Airlines sold $5.1 billion in the frequent flier and $25.8 billion in airfare revenue. Additionally, to build customer loyalty, airlines have partnered with credit card companies to provide new offers. The credit card company then bundles airline services with complimentary services including hotels, restaurants, and entertainment.

Using Customer Feedbacks

What’s one of the best ways to ensure customer loyalty? It’s taking customer feedback seriously and incorporating them. Nothing delights the customer more than the knowledge that their suggestions have been taken into consideration. Flight delays are one of the major pain points for the customers, and Aeromexico is taking a proactive approach to improving their service by obtaining customer survey result in response to a delayed flight. So if a delay were to occur, an Aeromexico staff member will approach the passenger, apologize for the delay, state the reason, and inform the revised departure time to the passenger. After that, the customer is asked to complete an online survey on the clarity of communication between the staff and the customer, which helps the company to address any areas of concern.

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