Airlines find ways to cater to customers

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Airlines find ways to cater to customers

Business and leisure travelers alike have been trying to avoid checking luggage ever since 2008, when airlines began charging their passengers for the service. According to a recent article from USA Today, airlines are trying to accommodate travelers who are trying to pack all their luggage into one carry-on bag by making more room for baggage in plane cabins.

United, Delta and US Airways have also recently made announcements that they are planning to make adjustments to their planes or purchase aircrafts with bigger bins that will make it easier for passengers to bring larger carry-on bags, said the news source.

"A customer who has a smooth boarding experience is more likely to report an enjoyable travel experience," Rahsaan Johnson, a spokesman for United Airlines, told USA Today. He also explained that these positive experiences can create an opportunity for airlines to earn more business from happy customers.

A few new aircrafts that are catering to passengers with larger carry-on bags are Boeing's new 787 Dreamliner and 737s, which have pivot bins with curved doors that can better fit standard 9-by-14-by-22-inch roll-aboard bags, according to the news source.

"It's part of the philosophy of creating more space in the cabin," Kent Craver, regional director of passenger satisfaction and revenue at Boeing, told the news source. "The pivot bin is designed around the shape of standard bags."

While several airlines are accommodating passengers by providing them with extra space to put their carry-on baggage, some are using social networking to improve their customer service, reported The Chicago Tribune.

"If a customer has a problem, the fastest way to address it has become social media," Stuart Greif, vice president of global travel for J.D. Power and Associates, told the newspaper. "Younger generations might never call into a call center. They might always go online and address these things in real-time."

The real-time nature of Twitter gives airlines the ability to cater to the needs of passengers in a matter of minutes. Travelers are not the only ones who benefit from social media use - the airlines can also improve their customer retention by using such sites, said the paper.

Social media and more space for carry-on bags are just a few ways airlines are making life easier for travelers. Another way travelers can improve their trips is by staying in serviced apartments, which offer those away on business or vacation a comfortable living option.