I am definitely what you would call a Frequent Flyer, averaging six to eight flights every month. Since the majority of my travel is within Asia Pacific, I’ve become very accustomed to the high level of service I receive on Asian airlines.
The warm welcome when boarding the plane, the friendly service during the flight and the fond farewell upon landing. Small touches like hot towels, the Thai orchids that feature on a Thai Airways flight, the offer of a Singapore Sling cocktail with Singapore Airlines or a cup of Jasmine tea on Cathay Pacific, go a long way.
Asian airlines are renowned worldwide for this exceptional service and rightly so, protect their reputations fiercely. They are very conscious of ensuring that each and every passenger has a positive travel experience and are always thinking of ways to improve their service. Of course, in today’s volatile operating environment, it’s quite a challenge to maintain a high level of customer service while also managing the bottom line. It is a precarious balancing act.
Over the past three years, we have seen a dramatic increase in Asian carriers signing up for Altéa, our Customer Management System for airlines. I believe it is no coincidence that over those years we have also seen Asian airlines focus on maintaining their leadership in customer service.
While it might not be obvious to the traveller, IT and service are very closely linked for an airline and renewing IT is one of the most economical ways of ensuring that customer service will be consistently high quality for many years to come.
Of course an airline’s staff are the front-line of service, the ones who deliver the messages that make a travel experience memorable. But actually, it is the IT behind the scenes that ensures the staff have good news to share with their passengers.
Following Qantas’ implementation of the full Altéa suite in 2008, we have signed agreements with Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, Jin Air, Korean Air, ANA and most recently, Thai Airways. We held a signing ceremony with Thai Airways in Bangkok on 21 July, 2011, to commemorate the milestone agreement.
Thai Airways joins the Altéa community of airlines who share a common goal of ensuring that behind the scenes, they have the best IT that facilitates the best service. And that means all IT processes from pre-flight reservation, to the airport check in and boarding, to the flight itself and arrival at the destination.
Altéa also helps our airline partners to display real-time fares through all booking channels so customers know they are getting the best price and real-time seat selection that allow customers to choose their preferred spot in the cabin. Once at the airport, it ensures that check-ins move quickly to eliminate long queues and gives check-in staff access to a customer’s profile so they can ensure that meal and seat requests are met and frequent flyer status is recognised.
So if you are a frequent flyer like I am, you know that you will always be taken care of and can relax to enjoy that cup of Jasmine tea or Singapore Sling.