Travel and Tourism Sector: Establishing and Retaining Customer Loyalty

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Assisting the Customer (P1, P2, M1)
Organisation | Size | Type | Main method of customer interface| Virgin Atlantic | Large | Private and integrated | Online and over the phone | Merlin Entertainments | Large| Private | Face to face | Thomas cook| Large | Private and integrated | Face to face and over the phone and online | Marwell Zoo | Medium | Independent | Over the phone |

Aspersion Guest House Surrey | Small| Independent | Face to face | Anis Louise Guest House chesterfield | Small | Independent | Face to face |

Lots of companies within the travel and tourism sector have mission statements. A mission statement is a summary of the aims and values of a company or an organization. An example of a mission statement is “To grow a profitable airline where people love to fly and people love to work”, this is Virgin Atlantic’s mission statement. This tells you that they aim to make all their customers to have happy journeys without any delays or set-backs and they want each customer to love flying with Virgin so they will fly with them again. It is important to have a customer service policy because the customers will want to know the information the organisation will provide, the performance levels they aim for, payment and refund policies, what they will do in the event of a delay or cancellation and the compensation they will provide. It is also important for an organisation to have a complaints policy because many organisations want to exceed the expectations of their customers but sometimes they don’t, so they have to make sure professionally and fairly as if a customer gets their compliant resolved to their satisfaction they may still be more loyal than a customer that hasn’t made a complaint. Organisations should make their complaints policy clear to customers so they know how to complain. There are 3 types of customer interface these are:

* Face to face- this is talking to customers face to face, for example, talking to a travel consultant in a travel shop. * Remotely- talking to customer on the phone through call centres. * Online- a customer writing feedback as many customers use the internet to research and book holidays.

It is important for organisations to keep records of their customers because many customers book their holidays online and their information needs to be sent to those who need to take action such as if a customer books a inclusive holiday will need the details of their booking forwarded to the airline to reserve the seats, the hotel to reserve the accommodation. The information must also be available to other departments in the organisation so tickets can be issued and invoices can be sent.

Feedback from customers helps organisations to improve what they are doing and they will need to know what was good and what was bad so they know what to change for the better. However most customers don’t tell the organisation they are unhappy, they just stop buying from them. If an organisation encourages feedback, more customers will tell them what they are not happy with so the organisation can improve and avoid upsetting future customers as well. However sometimes the organisation has provided what they planned but it no longer suits the customer, for example, if a customer had young children that are now teenagers, they may want to change their holiday.

Organisations can increase customer loyalty by making sure the product is exactly what the customer wants, for example, the hotel they want to stay in and the process needs to be as hassle free as possible for the customer and your personal behaviour needs to be excellent ,for example, show genuine interest in the customers comments. A lot of organisations reward their customers for being loyal for example they have clubs that provide priority booking, special reservations and customer service telephone number, guaranteed seat selection, cabin or car upgrades etc.

Organisations must...
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