Delivering a First-Class Travel Experience for Passengers
- The article revolves around offering a first-class travel experience for passengers in airport contexts.
- It focuses primarily on the Dublin Airport, Ireland, and its efforts towards satisfying customers’ needs and demands alongside ensuring they enjoy first-class experiences during their visits to the airport.
- The article’s arguments are based on the fact that airport travel has become a significant contradiction in recent years with airport managers finding themselves at the helm of operations that have the potential of creating great joy and excitement among passengers on one side and engendering frustration and stress on the other side.
- Passenger experience in an airport is often complex and of a multi-faceted nature, and this is a fact that is well acknowledged. Such an experience is much more than having direct interactions with the airport but rather begins long before the passenger enters the airport premises.
- The purpose of the article is to provide significant insight into how the Dublin Airport, Ireland, has taken the task of providing a first-class travel experience for passengers.
There is no clear defined research design or method used by the author when it comes to identifying how Dublin Airport satisfies the needs and ensures a first-class travel experience for passengers. However, the article’s findings can be based on the following methodologies.
- Quantitative methodologies
- Ongoing tracking studies
- International benchmarking
- Qualitative methodologies
- Focus groups
- Online panels
- Accompanied journeys
Results and Findings
- Influences on the passenger experience
- Passengers are influenced by trends- referring to what goes on around them and in the world. By being aware of the wider cultural, social, and economic trends that affect passengers, Dublin Airport can achieve effective service design and delivery.
- The use of technology such as WiFi- having passengers who are “always in” and are permanently visible in a given network and connected to the world through the Internet enhances passenger experience as it allows the measuring of queues to establish where people are in their journey. However, the use of such technology could also cause dissatisfaction among passengers when they are unhappy with technological facilities they are offered.
- Time- one of the scarcest resources in an airport. Passenger time at the airport is affected by factors such as queueing delays, drip-feed updates of progress, cancellation of flights, as well as sudden gate change announcements. To enhance the passenger experience, airports must provide not only value for money but also value for time.
- Strategies for how Dublin Airport delivers a first class experience for passengers
- Implementation of strategies must come after the airport understands passengers’ definition of ‘first class experience’, minds the external trends that invisibly influence passenger needs and behavior, and establishes the appropriate means of tracking these perspectives over time.
- Leveraging the web- Dublin Airport allows passengers to see, book, and pay for a wide range of services easily and fast through their website, and thus, passengers find this more efficient when arranging for their travels. There is a booking engine on dublinairport.com that allows the pre-booking of car parking as well as a range of essential passenger services. Also, there is an online shop that allows passengers to browse, select, as well as pay for a wide range of products from the airport’s retail outlets.
- Working in partnership with airlines- intending Dublin Airport passengers have the opportunity to book their flights and car parking in the same booking conversation. This makes it easier for passengers and has business benefits.
- Dublin Airport has value-added promotions- these promotions are crucial as they ensure the rewarding of customers and helps to build partner relationships thereby increasing sales. For instance, Dublin Airport has a rewarding scheme targeting short-term car park users where passengers who book a space receive a complimentary pass for Fast Track through security or a free coffee.
- PR and brand awareness value offered- Dublin Airport has something to offer to passengers who use its car park, and this is something that competing brands do not have or offer.
- Dublin Airport has an app that provides essential information and has unique features and benefits that help in broadening the appeal of the app beyond passengers that seek helpful journey information. Such an app offered by Dublin Airport is the Flight Tracker that is powered by flightradar24. This app allows passengers to follow significant details such as the arrival and departing of aircraft from various airports. The app also has an m-payment feature that enables passengers to pre-book and pay for car parking.
- Dublin Airport put in place plans to deliver transfer growth as well as improve the transfer product at the airport. Part of the plans was to leverage mobile and digital channels to explain self-care to transferring passengers and provide guidance and help in uncertain environments. This has helped to reduce anxiety alongside helping transferring passengers to make good use of their dwell time. The benefit of this strategy is that it has helped to enhance the customer experience as well as increase the airport’s commercial opportunity.
Critique of Methods
- Quantitative methodologies: ongoing tracking studies and international benchmarking
- The best methods to approach the research topic or problem.
- With these methods, it is possible for Dublin Airport to obtain an objective, representative, and statistically sound view of its performance over time, particularly when it comes to delivering first-class travel experience for passengers.
- The best methods and are helpful when attempting to get to the truth amid a noisy feedback landscape.
- Qualitative approaches: focus groups, online panels, and accompanied journeys.
- The best approaches to situations where exploration or a deeper understanding of influencing factors is considered valuable.
- Can become a locus for the sharing and actioning of information from a wide range of sources as well as providing a platform for the cross-functional sharing of information.
- The above approaches are effective and are the best when it comes to the research problem at hand. However, when using the approaches, it is important to give careful attention to the sampling involved in the selection of participants.
Threats to Internal and External Validity
- Reduced internal validity
- Uncontrolled environment.
- There is no information that the evaluation of issues at hand is done by experts conversant with the subject matter.
- Reduced external validity
- Lack of information about participants such as their experience level. Readers assume that the participants or respondents were passengers at Dublin Airport.
- Simulator environment: more factors may be involved in delivering a first-class travel experience for passengers, and there is hardly any information about the conditions in which the respondents operate.
- No clear information about the population targeted by the research.