Good News Story 1
Last May we were flying back from Tampa to Gatwick. In the latter part of the flight my wife, Gloria, began to feel rather unwell and breathless. She was put on oxygen and looked after very well by the cabin crew for the remainder of the flight and whisked off by the paramedics to hospital in Redhill.
The airline’s care was exemplary, so well done and thanks to Vanessa Redman and her fellow cabin staff from British Airways. In fact, yes, well done, British Airways.
The paramedics crew was new to the airport. They left for the hospital so quickly that they quite forgot me and left me behind. What to do?
I was escorted from the plane initially by a British Airways representative and was handed over to a Gatwick staff person, a very nice lady. She led me quickly through immigration / Passport Control (well, it was about a three-quarter of a mile trip), and arranged with the airline that they should collect our luggage from the carousel and deliver it home. She then took me through Customs, explaining what had happened and then guided me to the taxi area. She made sure I was in the taxi I had already ordered, and that I was on my way to the hospital.
At the hospital my wife was feeling much better and was anxious to be discharged, which she was after a couple of hours. Credit due here to East Surrey Hospital. I am pleased to say Gloria has been thoroughly checked out and has not had any similar problems since.
So,what a great service both from British Airways and from the Gatwick ground staff!
Good News Story 2
Gloria and I were married in Jersey and 12th October is our wedding anniversary. This year it was our tenth, and we had decided to return to the scene of the happy event (no, definitely not the scene of the crime). This meant another visit to Gatwick and this time a budget airline, Flybe. When we arrived we found that they had caught us out with one of their rules about baggage and we ended up paying them more. I was annoyed, mostly with myself, for not managing to stay within Flybe’s rules.
I am not rude to staff, but seeing that I was a bit cross, I have to say that the Flybe lady on the desk handled herself very well and in a friendly manner. I am sure that she has experience of very irate customers, but she came out with full credit as well as with our money of course.
My wife needed assistance to get to the gate for the flight and was wheeled by a Gatwick staff lady, who was very pleasant and chatty.
The Flybe cabin crew were very helpful throughout.
Upon our return to Gatwick after a very pleasant interlude in Jersey, we again requested assistance for my wife. We were both taken on an electric buggy from the arrival gate through to the baggage hall, where our airport escort / driver grabbed our case. He then drove us through Customs and all the way to the Long Stay Car Park bus stop, and all in about fifteen minutes from getting off the plane.
In fact the service by the Gatwick staff once again could not have been bettered.
Mostly when you see articles and posts about customer service on-line, it will be about things that have gone wrong; about failures, rudeness and rip-offs. It is human nature to complain and find fault. I can be guilty of it myself and I could talk about a little local difficulty with car hire in Jersey. But I won’t.
Really I want to celebrate that airlines such as British Airways and Flybe are capable of great service with properly trained and thoroughly nice staff, and that a vast airport such as Gatwick can be so supportive in getting us to and from our destinations safe and sound.
Good customer service is not so interesting as the poor sort of service we can grumble about because we should expect good service. Great customer service deserves to be shouted from the roof tops.
Customer service done properly can get our names in lights and get us great referrals. You won’t find me criticising the airlines or the airport any time soon. Rather I would recommend using them. Do you have good stories to tell about airports and airlines?