Do holidaymakers’ complaints get listened to?

By | Category: Travel rumblings
cartoon of an unhappy suitcase

If you are unhappy complain. More people are listening it seems © Dan Sperrin

The customer experience consultancy, Qualtrics, claims that holidaymakers believe that only about half of complaints come to the attention of anyone who can make a difference. Interestingly, this belief is held regardless of whether the complaint was made in person or via social media.

Because the survey by Qualtrics was international it is hard to say, from the survey sample of just 1,700, whether this reflects the attitudes of British or Irish holidaymakers.

Nonetheless, the suggestion underlying the survey is that regardless of all the customer service legislation, training and emphasis that have taken place over the last thirty years, the holidaymakers still feels short-changed. Companies and organisation may object and point out the high levels of satisfaction their own monitoring delivers but truth and perception are two entirely separate things. If people don’t perceive they are being listened to then it takes a lot of persuasion to convince them that they are misinformed.

The survey also concludes that if you are complaining about accommodation, holidaymakers believe that the best way to reach a person in authority is via a formal survey. They think that their feedback is not appreciated or actioned by hotel staff but at least it suggests that those in authority do take note of what appears on those online or paper surveys that are available in hotel rooms or at the reception desks.

In the airline business about 80% of passengers believe that senior airline executives do care about their views and 90% believe that airline staff do listen to their feedback. Whilst that still leaves a sizeable minority which believes that they are not being heard when they have a gripe, it does suggest that things have changed since the first surveys in this country by the Customer Service Index, the Customer Care Alliance and the Institute of Customer Service.

The conclusion is still that you should complain when things are not up to par. By and large, you are being heard.

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