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Low cost and quality service compatible ?

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Michael O'Leary, CEO of Ryanair

The Irish airways company Ryanair is the number one of low cost airways companies. This company knew a successful development thanks to her very attractive prices policy. But is this low price really a good deal ? Most of the time, people are only looking for the price level, what it is understandable if your budget is not extensible, but what about behind this ?

Most of the time, this airway company is operating on airports where airport taxes are lower, and often, these airport are far from the main cities. You have to take a train, or a taxi, it will take you time to join your final destination. Maybe sometime, it will be still shipper than if you take an ordinary airway company. Anyway ! But what about your luggages if they are lost ? Most of the time, in such companies, they have no insurances, and if your luggages are not found again, it is a pure loss for you, and in this case, your travel will be much more expensive.

But recently, this company announced her intention to make travel people standing up. When I heard about this, I was thinking it was a joke ! First of all, it is not comfortable at all, and second point, I am not sure it is very efficient in terms of security. What would happen if the flight is crossing an air pocket ? Most of the time, in such situation, you are asked to fast your seat belt. When will they attach also people to the wings ?

Few weeks ago, this company had also a brilliant idea. The CEO of the company, the fiery Michael O’Leary, was thinking to ask a fee (£1 which is a good return for the beneficiary) to use the toilets in the planes, and also to suppress some toilets in order to have only one toilet on board ! You will probably say that you have not to do a MBA to have such innovative ideas, but when you plan such innovations, I am wondering which consideration you still have for your customers. The company Boeing answered to that wonderful idea that they will not change anything in the installation of the planes for security reasons.

On ordinary flights, you ticket will probably more expensive, but just have a look on the counterpart you will have. You will have a meal, you will be sure that there are toilets on board and that you will not be asked to pay for it. And for your luggage, you will be sure that you will have an indemnity if they are lost. Your flight ticket is more expensive, because you have a service, and each service has a cost. It is understandable that airways companies are focusing on they margins as in each business, but they have to be customer oriented too. For me, for such low cost companies, they are not customer focused at all. They think they are, because they are arguing on the low price level, but what bout the service, the comfort and the security ?

A member of my family traveled in a low cost company airplane, and told me that a transport of pigs would have been more comfortable, and the price for a drink would be probably shipper in a luxurious hotel. The plane was not very clean too ! Personally, I am not confident to take such plane, where finally, the customer is only considered as a good to be transported, a company receiving some government aid, which means money from your pocket, a company who has not a lot of consideration for his manpower and the social legislation, which could present a danger in such activity. When a company is pushing such logic to the extremes, I am wondering what about the maintenance of the planes and the security.

We have to know that each good, each service has a cost. There is always a level under which you have to doubt about the quality of the service, the conditions included in such services. People who have to deliver the services need to be paid, and normally, a company can not make sales with losses. So, if a service seems to be competitive because a very low price, it is maybe because they is no good quality service or no services at all.

Personally, when I have to take a plane, for business or for holidays, I am always considering that my trip has to be done with good conditions, and my trip begins when I am closing the door of my office or from my home. The lower price is not for me an positive argument to take such option, to the detriment of the comfort and the security. Consider that your live and the respect you are entitled to have, has much more value than the price difference you would gain.

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Written by Eric Saint-Guillain

May 2, 2010 at 16:44

Posted in Business

Tagged with , , , , , ,

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