The airline industry has suffered recent setbacks such as the high cost of fuel that have forced the major carriers to cut back on many of their services. Some firms, such as American Airlines, have started charging passengers fees for checked baggage. Others charge for in-flight snacks or donâ€™t serve any at all. Airlines have reduced the number of flights they operate to certain destinations, packing planes full to overflowing, and made restrictions on the use of frequent-flyer miles so tight that it is difficult to cash them in. Then there are the record-setting delays and lost luggage claims. All of these factors add up to less-than-enjoyable flying experiences for most travelers, many of whom are opting to find other modes of transportation or just staying home.
Suppose you are a marketer for one of the major airlines. Your company is facing difficulty providing acceptable service to the passengers on its flights, but you need to find a way to emphasize the positive features of your airlineâ€™s service.
1. Using the five variables of service quality as your guideline, what steps would you takeâ€”within your realm of controlâ€”to close the gap between the level of service passengers expect and the level they have been receiving?
2. How might you attract business customers? Would you give them a level of service that is different from families and other consumers who are flying for pleasure?