The KSeeker

In Search of Knowledge…

Customer service finally arrives in India….

Posted by Girish Krishnan on September 7, 2006

I just made a short official trip to Chennai – My work got over really fast and I managed to leverage the my free time meeting up with some good ol’ friends, and it felt great!

The star attraction of the trip, was definitely the flight. Though I had heard about “the king of good times”, till this point in time I had never traveled by Kingfisher. The first impressions weren’t that great either. The ticket issuing counter was pretty slow, though it wasn’t crowded. I got to witness the rapid change that’s happening to India’s IT savy-ness when a 60 year old gentleman started asking the counter people if their “server” is behaving slow and why they weren’t informing the maintenance people to get it corrected!!!

The boarding happened pretty early, and the sight of an ATR psyched me out – These are propeller planes flying much slower than the jets and I really get a bad feeling whenever I am in one of these. To site a reason, i have been hardwired this way courtesy the numerous turbulent journeys I had been though when I was in Des Moines, IA. But amazingly, the plane (an ATR 72-500) was very stable and I never got choked/nauseated throughout the journey as there was ample air circulation all over!. The travel experience was simply “Wow”, and the food – superb!.

Other than the ambience and the comfortable seats, i found important differentiators in all of the below….

• When u enter the plane – u get a smile and a welcome (Slightly better than other services!)
• U get a water bottle, just in case u r thirsty (No other plane gives this – and this is a big plus because the space shrinkage u experience as u enter a plane could get compensated with some activity – like drinking water )
• U get a pouch with a pen, two candies, a cologne tissue, a menu card telling u whats coming! (No other service gives this!)
• U get food + juice + water + coffee (No other service gives all of this – esp the hot beverages)
• When they come back to get the tray, there is a ready stock of water bottles and mouth freshners kept on the trolley – just in case u want to have one more ! (Everyone else is basically stingy and it shows!)

To summarize, the people behind Kingfisher have made sure that they set enough signals to indicate that they are very liberal! In addition, you also have drool-worthy air hostesses who score higher when it comes to talking pleasantly to passengers as compared to the ones in any other airline currently flying in India!

And in the end u really feel like giving “good” feedback…

Both my flights were spot on time and to verify any anomalies, I did a quick poll of the people sitting around, as well as of the lovely air hostess – and all the replies indicated the flights were on schedule in contrast to the always late “Indian”, and always later “Deccan”!

The key takeaway from the flight journey is simple – In India, nobody else have ever placed customer service at a higher level than Kingfisher airlines. This is the fist time that a “Service” oriented community is getting “served” in a real sense even when they are flying in economy class.

I hope that this trend remains, becomes contagious, spreads to other service sectors in India and in the process goes a step further in liberating our society from class differentiation and lack of mutual respect…
Meanwhile – Try flying Kingfisher, u’ll love it…


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