There is Still Hope: Quality Customer Service for Airlines

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I really love it when I come across exceptional customer service because I am passionate about delivering exceptional service to our customers.

This time I am calling out the airline industry again. (Anyone remember my nightmare trip to COPSWEST a couple months ago?) But today I am really and truly smiling, because there are airlines that do get it and Delta is one of them!

 

Recently, on a trip to a meeting in Florida, I arrived at the Rochester airport with plenty of time to spare. I was randomly coded for pre-check (did I win the lottery?) which made the TSA screening a breeze and something that I would gladly pay for. I checked in at the gate and the Delta attendant greeted me with a smile by name – wowser – lovin’ it already!

When it was time to board the plane (on time!), I was again greeted by name with a smile AND the greeting was followed by, “Have a great time!” all while barcode scanning my ticket.

Once on board, I sat and waited (but not forever like that horrid American flight).

Uh oh. Wait, there was an announcement. The familiar and dreaded announcement was on the way; however this time, the delivery was right on! 

The Captain addressed his customers by starting off with an apology, and then informing us that there was an issue and maintenance was on its way (no Bills game this morning- phew). 

“We have been working to trouble shoot this ourselves,” the full explanation continued. They even tried “re-booting the plane” by shutting down and powering up again.(Love creative problem solving!) Long story short – “re booting” the plane did not solve the problem, but this is where the exceptional service truly continued to unfold:

  • We were proactively kept in the loop with regular status updates by the Captain.
  • We were provided with solutions  and options to choose from to solve our connection issues. Anyone that was going to miss meetings in NYC was given the opportunity to deboard. 
  • Delta proactively rebooked everyone who would miss their connecting flights on the next available flight (which was leaving on the same day, mind you) and this information would be readily available upon our arrival at LaGuardia (nearly 100 % of us would miss our connecting flight).

 

I used the time (waiting for the maintenance van to show) not to fret or frantically search for a solution, but instead sat back and got caught up on some work emails and got a few things accomplished. We were notified when the van arrived (full toolbox this time) and assured the problem was a simple fix. The problem was indeed fixed and…We took off!

When we arrived at LaGuardia, I was thanked for my business as I deboarded. I easily located a Delta customer service desk staffed by an agent who smiled and asked how she could be of assistance.

She was sure to make eye contact and smile the entire time (great body language).  She too addressed me using my name. She quickly solved my problem (and, no, it was not 1/2 hour of keyboarding strokes – remembering again that scene from Meet the Parents). She thanked me for flying Delta. I was on my way to a new gate with a new boarding pass in hand in under 5 minutes.

 

Delta_Air_Lines

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.org

Talk about great service. 

Talk about great delivery. 

Talk about seamless.

Talk about making it easy for your customer.

 

Delta does indeed get it!

 

They “get” exceptional service and it was glaring in the most positive of ways!

 

They have my attention and I am going to look to fly the friendly skies with Delta at every opportunity (and this blog will be an example of exceptional service I will use for our next operations team meeting)!

 

Thanks Delta!