2 ATW | Special Supplement | atwonline.com
does not mean low
Across Southeast Asia, low-cost carriers (LCCs) now account for more than 50% of the commercial air transport market. For many travelers in the region, their first experience of
flying is on an LCC.
China is highly active in the LCC
growth phenomenon, of course, and as
with the rest of the world, some Chinese
LCCS will succeed while others will fail.
What is interesting, however, is not
just how LCCs are growing the overall
air transport market, but how those passengers who opt for budget air travel are
re-shaping the definition of good airline
Many LCC passengers are millennials. They are young, connected, eager to
travel and explore. They want the lowest
price, but they still have certain service
expectations. They are mobile-first,
doing everything via their smartphones.
They expect the airlines they fly with
to deliver the information they need for
their journey when they need it and via
their phones, devices, and preferred social
media channels. They want more automation and more control. They accept
ancillary fees, but they want upsells that
are relevant to their preferences and to
their journey. More and more, they will
expect fast, affordable onboard Wi-Fi so
they can stay connected door-to-door, as
they do in all other aspects of their lives.
Succeeding as an LCC in an increas-
ingly competitive market does not mean
avoiding investment in passenger experi-
ence products. Quite the opposite. It
means investing in automation, technol-
ogy, connectivity and data processing.
The LCC customer may be happy to
bring onboard his own pillow and to pay
for a beverage. But that same customer
will not be happy if he or she is not
instantly updated on delays, schedule or
gate changes, and other important infor-
mation relative to their journey. In some
respects, the LCC millennial is a more
demanding customer than the traditional
full-service frequent flyer.
LCCs in Asia and elsewhere must keep
this in mind as they prioritize their customer service offerings. But the full-service legacy carriers should also take note.
They, too, need to adapt to the changing
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