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Rudest flight attendants
May 2nd, 2014 by elisa

We tend to expect the attendants on our flights to be the epitome of cheeriness and professionalism; but a recent survey of 14 North American airlines assessed the rudeness rating of flight attendants, with some surprising results.

The Airfarewatchdog commissioned survey found flight attendants at Spirit Airlines to be the rudest at 26%, with Air Canada second at 11%, and perhaps rather surprisingly in fourth position, Virgin America with 9% of the votes.

The Virgin America ranking is a surprise considering it came out on top in an Airline Quality Rating study just weeks earlier.

Least rude were Alaska Airlines and Southwest, both receiving only 1% of the vote.

3,400 frequent fliers were asked to choose from the 14 airlines, with the results weighted by number of passengers flown by each airline to account for the fact that larger airlines would have a bigger response.

Full results:

Spirit — 26%

Air Canada — 14%

Frontier — 11%

Virgin America — 9%

Allegiant — 8%

United — 7%

US Airways — 7%

American — 5%

AirTran — 3%

Delta — 2%

Hawaiian — 3%

JetBlue — 3%

Alaska — 1%

Southwest — 1%

Pre-ticked boxes for insurance add-ons could be banned
Mar 12th, 2014 by elisa

Pre-ticked boxes for insurance add-ons when purchasing services like a holiday could be banned by the Financial Conduct Authority.

The FCA claims the £1bn insurance add-on market is overcharging customers for products they may not need or use. An investigation in July 2013 by the FCA found poor competition at point of sale and low levels of claims. There was also a lack of information which prevented customers from making informed choices regarding the products.

25% of customers who bought insurance as an add-on were not aware that they could buy it separately elsewhere. 38% said they had not planned to buy the add-on before the purchase. 69% of those who bought it could not accurately remember how much they paid three to four months later, with 19% forgetting they had even bought it.

Christopher Woolard, director of policy, risk and research at the FCA, said: “There’s a clear case for us to intervene. Competition in this market is not working well and many consumers are simply not getting value for money.

“Firms must start putting consumers first and stop seeing them as pound signs.”

The FCA is proposing banning pre-ticked boxes to ensure consumers actively opt in to buy, and not have to choose to opt out. It will also require companies to publish claim ratios to highlight low-value products, which it hopes will encourage better quality products for consumers.

Where do Brits take their tea?
Jan 23rd, 2014 by elisa

Teabags picture by Flickr user dullhunk

Teabags picture by Flickr user dullhunk

Everywhere, it seems! More than a quarter of British holidaymakers have to take teabags with them on holiday. 

The research by Norwegian Cruise Line found 26.5% of Brits can’t leave home without their teabags, and a surprising 24% want to feel their holiday is a home away from home by packing their slippers.

Reasons for going away on holiday were mainly to escape the British weather, while 6% wanted to get away from their neighbour and 5% their partner!

The survey of over 2,000 people also found that one in five passengers have holiday superstitions or rituals, such as avoiding the number 13 in their seat number, hotel room or floor, and wearing the same outfit every time they travel.

Francis Riley, Norwegian’s vice president and general manager, international, said “British holidaymakers appreciate being able to explore new experiences on holidays, however like to have their home comforts and traditions with them as well.”

 

Do you have any holiday rituals or superstitions? Tell us in the comments box below!

Trillions of air miles going to waste
May 16th, 2013 by elisa

According to a recent survey, four out of ten UK residents who collect air miles never cash them in, leaving an estimated 14 trillion air miles currently unused.

The survey of 1,005 UK residents, conducted for incremental revenue specialist Collinson Latitude, showed that of the 23% of the British population who collect air miles, six out of 10 of them claim that it takes too long to collect anything of value.

62% of air mile scheme members said that being able to spend their points to purchase goods such as travel accessories or electrical items would be more of an incentive. So too, would being able to top up rewards with cash to buy goods or services.

Product director James Berry said: “This study doesn’t paint a particularly pretty picture of many airline loyalty programmes. While there is clearly desire among consumers to collect these points, the way in which the loyalty programmes are being managed is throwing up barriers.

“Rewards seem to be beyond reach or are simply not attractive enough. Consumers are also being frustrated when they attempt to redeem their rewards by a lack of availability of flights.

“On a positive note, consumers are throwing the airlines a lifeline by highlighting ways in which these programmes can be improved. What’s important is for airlines to listen to the messages coming from their customers and take action.”

The study was conducted for Collinson Latitude by independent research company, Aurora, last year.

Don’t carry your jacket and a book on a flight, you may get asked to leave!
Nov 18th, 2012 by elisa

Considering tying a jumper around your waist or slung over your arm while boarding a plane? Think again! According to a new passenger survey, passengers have been banned from flights for trying to board while carrying jumpers and jackets.

The survey, by Budget Airline Watch and WhichBudget, revealed the extent of the problem by reporting passengers which claim to have been banned from boarding flights for refusing to throw away “excess jumpers and jackets”; others have been charged for going over their baggage allowance by the weight of a bar of soap (100g), and were not allowed to redistribute the weight to another checked bag.

One passenger on Easyjet was asked if she’d mind leaving her check-in luggage behind because the aircraft was full to capacity. Passengers on various airlines had to return to the gate from the aircraft in order to double-check the size of their carry-on case, and in a well-publicised incident recently, a female passenger was arrested on a Ryanair flight for arguing with staff after allegedly trying to carry on a book and a scroll with her carry-on bag.

Of the 340 passengers who responded to the survey, two-thirds believed budget airlines to offer value for money, compared to only a third who thought they provided good service.  Topping the good service list was Easyjet, with Ryanair flying low at the bottom with 77% of passengers believing it to offer the worst service.

Jo Chipchase of consumer advice site Budget Airline Watch said: “The results of the survey highlight our overriding concern that profits gained through baggage fees and ancillary revenues are placed way ahead of customer service these days.

“It has reached the point where passengers expect to receive lousy treatment from budget airlines and try to work around it, as best they can. In the survey, we even had reports of check-in staff refusing to help passengers and swearing at them! And, all things considered, it’s hardly a big surprise that Ryanair has won the ‘worst customer service’ category.”

 

If you have had any luggage or other customer-service related experiences, please share them below.

 

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