British Airways introduces latest mobile technology for cabin crew to deliver personalised customer service

British Airways has announced that all of its 15,000 cabin crew will be issued with iPhone XRs, enabling them to offer a more personalised service to over 45 million customers that travel with the airline every year.

The new phones will feature a selection of apps to help crew offer customers instant additional assistance during their journey. They will also have access to a range of customer information on their phones, including previous flights and meal preferences. The investment for all cabin crew members follows a successful trial of iPads for senior cabin crew on board every flight.

Bradley Smith, one of the first cabin crews to receive a brand-new iPhone XRs, said the phones are enabling a step-change in customer service. ‘Recently, when a customer realised that he had forgotten to order a special meal, he was really impressed when I quickly took out the phone, logged onto ba.com and ordered a meal for his return journey – all within a matter of minutes in the middle of the flight,’ Smith said.

‘It felt so rewarding to be able to immediately resolve the situation for the customer. All my crew reference guides are also loaded onto the phone, so everything I need is in my pocket throughout each flight; it really has made a huge difference already,’ he added.

Karen Slinger, British Airways’ Head of Inflight Customer Experience, added: ‘Our customers spend up to 14 hours with our cabin crew on a single flight and we know from the recent success at the Skytrax Awards that the care provided by our people has a huge impact on the overall customer experience and is what sets us apart from other airlines. This investment is about further empowering our crew and providing them with everything they need to deliver the very best service to our customers while in the air.’

Earlier this year, the airline launched Help Me; a brand-new section of ba.com to help customers make changes to their bookings and find out more about their consumer rights. The airline also announced a multi-million-pound investment in training for its staff based at Heathrow, with every agent now trained to help customers with a range of different queries and personally reach out to them at the airport using iPads loaded with a host of specialist apps, British Airways said.

easyJet to enhance passenger experience with mobile technology advances

easyJet, one of the UK’s leading airlines, is looking to enhance its customer experience with the launch of push notifications for users of the airline’s free app on iPhone.

Starting April 22, 2014, customers who opt to receive notifications will receive real time updates with information such as the time when online check-in for their flight is open and when travel documentation needs to be added to a booking, as well as alerts which will keep them posted on the status of their flight.

Peter Duffy, easyJet’s Group Commercial Director, Customer, Product and Marketing said: ‘The use of push notifications will transform the way that we communicate with our passengers. It’s yet another way in which easyJet is using technology to keep our passengers informed.

‘We’ll be providing them with targeted messages and helpful reminders at various steps of their easyJet journey to make things even easier for them when they’re on the move. It’s all part of our plan to make travelling with easyJet as easy as it is affordable.’

The notifications will also ensure that more customers are aware of easyJet’s Flight Tracker and provide direct access to the tool, which is available via easyJet.com and the easyJet mobile apps.

Launched in 2013, easyJet’s Flight Tracker provides users with up to the minute information on all flights in the easyJet network. It will now also be possible to receive push notifications, which will direct users straight to the Flight Tracker when their flight is delayed by more than 15 minutes or a live update direct from easyJet’s control centre is posted.

easyJet carries more than 61 million passengers annually, of which 11 million are travelling on business. The airline flies over 200 aircraft on more than 600 routes between over 130 airports and over 30 countries.

 

Distress Signal App Offers Emergency Contact for Travellers

Travellers visiting foreign countries may now install an Android app in their smartphones, which could help them contact emergency services if required.

The new app is called Distress Signal, and is being marketed as an ideal companion for British people travelling to foreign countries. The app uses SMS and GPS services to track the person requiring help, and may be a life saver in case of emergencies. It will send a text message with information on location, name, blood group, any allergies, and any other important information to the local emergency services from the user’s smartphone. The new app is also available for iPhone devices.

David Nurse, the managing director of Mesh Trading Ltd, the company that makes the app, said, ‘I realised that millions go abroad each year but wouldn’t know what number to call if they fell ill or were in an accident. Time is of the essence in an emergency, and if you don’t speak the language or know where you are, even if you get the number you might not be able to explain your situation.

That’s why I came up with Distress Signal. I realised that we could use the emergency SMS service developed for those with hearing problems to make it quick and easy for anyone to alert the police, ambulance or fire brigade. It means you don’t waste time and get help quickly.’

David, who himself has fallen sick abroad, where he didn’t know the local language, said, ‘It’s perfect if you don’t know where you are, don’t speak the language of the country you are in, can’t talk because of an intruder or medical problem, don’t have enough signal for a call, or just don’t have time to make the call, because time is critical!’

The texting feature currently is available in the UK, Ireland, China, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Philippines and Iceland. It is expected to be available across the US and Europe soon.