Incheon Airport: Best for Customer Service

By | Category: Travel news, Travel rumblings

Incheon airport, South Korea

Incheon airport, South Korea

Incheon Airport in South Korea is 10 years old. But for half of that time they have won awards for best service and customer satisfaction. They have won Skytrax awards, (an award voted by airport and airline users) ACI (the airports trade body) customer service awards for the last five years in a row and been featured in many publications as the airport that others aspire to.

Well what is that that makes customer so happy?

The first thing is the speed at which they handle passengers. As Jeong-Whey Kim, Deputy Director said at the Passenger terminal Expo in Copenhagen today, nobody likes airports that much. So making an airport liked by passengers is quite a task. The average time for checking in using a counter service is just 12 minutes; the average using a self service kiosk is 3 minutes. To go through passport control the time is just 2 minutes and to go through passport control is 10 seconds. Most airports – and passengers – would give their eye teeth to get close to let alone match these figures.

Probably most passengers want to get through airports seamlessly, quickly and without having any rise in their blood pressure. Figures like those mentioned above help reduce what is sometimes called customer anxiety models. But an increasing number of people spend time at airports and almost look at it as an event on its own. So Incheon has created something that I’ve not come across elsewhere. They have 9 museums and cultural offerings within the airport. There is sculpture, the Star Garden but the most popular is the Korean Cultural Experience Center in which passengers can participate just as they can in the regular Korean Royal Family Walk. Each of the exhibitions is changed every 3 months so that passengers have something fresh and new to see.

As with most airports, duty free sales and retailing is there as well, so much so that along with Heathrow and Dubai, Incheon is one of the world’s top three airports for duty free sales.

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