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TripAdvisor Air Travel Survey reveals seat discomfort is top gripe amongst Australian travellers while in-flight entertainment saw biggest improvement

August 18, 2014 Social Media No Comments Email Email

TripAdvisor®, the world’s largest travel site*, today announced the results of its second annual air travel survey of more than 4,800 Australian respondents1.

Australians prove to be a well-travelled bunch, with 87 per cent planning to travel domestically (up from 85% last year) and 86 per cent planning to travel internationally (up from 84% last year) in 2014.

“Demand for domestic and international travel continues to rise despite some persistent air travel frustrations, such as uncomfortable seats or unpredictable flight changes but we are also seeing some positive signs as flyers report better in-flight entertainment and check-in processes that help improve the traveller experience,” said Andrew Wong, regional director of TripAdvisor Flights, APAC.  

Uncomfortable seats voted top air travel complaint

The top five air travel complaints are a consistent sore-spot, with little change from the 2013 survey:

  1. Uncomfortable seats or limited legroom (70%)
  2. Loud or crying children (42%)
  3. Costly airline fees and ticket prices (37%)
  4. Long security lines (35%)
  5. Unpredictable flight delays or cancellations (30%)

However while travellers are complaining about the same issues, they are unwilling to pay extra dollars to escape these problems. Forty-three per cent are not willing to pay to sit in a child-free zone; similarly 45 per cent are not willing to pay for extra legroom for a flight under four hours. Twenty-four per cent of respondents would be willing to pay to sit in a child-free zone, but only if the cost was under $25; likewise 32 per cent would be willing to pay for extra legroom in flights under four hours, but again only if the cost was under $25.

When asked which one amenity would most improve their in-flight experience, travellers report: more legroom (42%), followed by a comfortable seat (23%) and complimentary in-flight Wi-Fi (11%).

Improvements in in-flight entertainment and check-in processes

Travellers were asked about improvements in air travel over the past five years, and better in-flight entertainment and check in processes were the top two choices.

  1. Better in-flight entertainment (55%)
  2. More stream-lined check-in process (52%)
  3. Easier booking (50%)
  4. More affordable flights (46%)
  5. More streamlined boarding process (38%)

Flyers Checking In then Logging Off on their Mobile 

The top three uses of mobile devices by travellers include “check-in to flights” (47%), “research flight prices” (44%) and “check flight status” (43%).

Once in the air, travellers are less eager to go online with 97 per cent saying they rarely or never purchase their carrier’s inflight Wi-Fi service.

TripAdvisor Flights Helps Flyers Book Wisely 

To help travellers make the best booking decision, TripAdvisor Flights features comprehensive in-flight insights, amenities information and candid traveller photos coupled with the ability to scan for the lowest prices for airlines globally. Travellers can try out these features at www.TripAdvisor.com.au/CheapFlightsHome.

The survey was conducted with 4,817 travellers in Australia from 25 June to 8 July 2014.

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