Roy Morgan has released its June Customer Satisfaction Awards and is shining the spotlight on airlines, with a few changes in the rankings.
Unlike 2015, when Singapore Airlines dominated this category for all 12 months, 2016 has seen two other contenders fighting for top spot: this month’s leader Emirates (who satisfied 89% of its customers in June) and second-place getter Air New Zealand (just over 87%).
Having won three months apiece so far this year, the two airlines have achieved the seeming impossible by holding Singapore Airlines – winner of the International Airline of the Year in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 – at bay.
Currently, Singapore sits in third position, less than one percentage point behind Air New Zealand
As can be seen in the chart, very little separates the customer satisfaction levels of the six highest scorers in the International Airline category. However, there is a veritable gulf of more than 40% between Emirates in top spot and American Airlines in 15th (57%).
Satisfying just under 85% of its passengers – its highest customer satisfaction level for the last 18 months – Qantas (International) is in sixth position, but its low-cost carrier Jetstar International (66%) does not fare quite so well.
Commenting on the findings, Roy Morgan Research chief executive, Michele Levine, noted that while Singapore Airlines had the International Airline category “in a virtual customer-satisfaction stranglehold” throughout 2015 (with Emirates and Air New Zealand having to be content with regular top five placements) the tables had turned in 2016.
“Emirates’ triumph in the June Customer Satisfaction Awards coincides with its victory in the annual Skytrax World Airline Awards as the World’s Best Airline,” Levine said.
“The Dubai-based airline’s commitment to customer satisfaction is clearly being noticed by its passengers. Other international airlines from our Top Five that also finished in the Skytrax Top Five were Qatar Airlines, Singapore Airlines and Cathay Pacific.
“Meanwhile, Air New Zealand has been in the news for its latest air-safety video starring Kiwi actor Rhys Darby and Hollywood starlet Anna Faris. An integral part of the airline’s brand is its irreverent sense of humour (the latest video is no exception), which undoubtedly endears it to its passengers.
“Of course, without an exceptional standard of in-flight and airport service to back this up, Air New Zealand would not be rating so highly in our Customer Satisfaction Awards.
“Although Singapore Airlines has not yet taken out a Customer Satisfaction Award this year, it should not be discounted. Having been International Airline of the Year four times running, Singapore practically wrote the book on keeping international passengers happy.”
Edited by Peter Needham