Friday, September 27, 2013

BE MY PRIVATE EYE - FLYING WITH AIR ASIA



ohoooooo....I was invited to be Air Asia's private eye on my last flight from Bangkok to Singapore and back. Well, actually they call it "eye in the sky", but I am sure it is just the little brother of the NSA ;-)

While I have nothing against giving feedback and improving customer service, I suspected in this case that it is more used to critizise certain employees and control them. I am certain that Air Asia's employees don't get paid a lot anyway. 

What did they ask me to do and observe? 

1. If you lined up at the counter, how many people were in front of you in the queue? How long did you wait in the queue? What was the name of the counter staff?
2. Did the staff ask you security questions relating to your baggage?
3. Was an announcement made for your flight at the departure gate?
4. What was the name of the Flight Attendant that served you?
5. Did the Captain make an announcement to welcome you on board?

Well, 1) was a no brainer, because there were no people in front of me flying out. On the way back it was dozens of people and I had to wait almost 30 mins....but what through me off, was that I had to memorize the name of the counter staff...hell do I know...I could not even see the tiny name badge and there was no name sign visible anyway. I also thought that it wasn't the counter staffs fault if the wait was too long, but rather the company's hiring and staffing policy. 

2) no questions asked ;P
3) I did book a "hot seat", so I can board early and get on the plane first. On the way out they made an announcement and I could "board" early....onto a bus!!! followed by all the other passengers and by the time the bus reached the plane, I was actually boarding last, because they were all ahead of me!  On the way back, there was no micro working, so that poor guy just opened the doors and said with a low tone, we can all board now!!  So far for paying premium for early boarding!
4) I actually looked at their name tags several times, but I could not memorize those thai names at all...too small ...too complicated. 
5) yeah he did! but I could not really hear anything...he did not speak loud enough and/or the speakers did not work well

So, there it went...my chance to get someone fired ;-)

What scared my actually the most was a little incident on my return flight (actually a rather big incident, if it had happend in the U.S.A). The staff of the gate did not lock the door of the gate and when the plane arrived, some passengers exited rather late, stood outside of our gate and finally pushed against the door, which opened. So the arriving passengers, 7 of them, walked into our departing gate area. 

Now remember, we were just all checked for security. Laptop out, phones out, buckle off, some shoes off, bags scanned, passengers scanned! And then these 7 people just walk in, looking around and only!!! because they went to the counter and asked for the luggage belt, did someone notice that something went very wrong. Security was called, the 7 had to walk out through the glass door again and their ID's were checked. But what had happened if they brought anything in? If it was 8 and not 7 who walked in, and only 7 walked out? I thought "sh....... here it goes, we will all have to walk out and get scanned again" but nothing happened. We were asked to board the plane a few minutes later. First time I felt a little un-easy on my hot seat!!

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