Friday, August 29, 2008

Another day, another gloomy airline homepage

The end in May of the niche business class airline SilverJet was a hot topic for weeks in the trade press.

The gushing coverage it received (including, we hasten to add, a Travolution Award for its website in 2007) during its two years in the skies seemed to many, on reflection, rather over the top in the end.

Anyway, pretty much out of nowhere yesterday came the collapse of Zoom Airlines, the transatlantic budget carrier with routes out of Glasgow, Gatwick, Belfast, Cardiff and Manchester.

How do airlines deal with this from a web perspective?

SilverJet posted a letter from its chief exec on its homepage, thanking cusotmers and staff, outlining how it hoped to get the airline up and running again with new investment, but very few details as to what stranded passengers should do.

Zoom has tried as best as it can to direct passengers to alternative airlines or routes, with links to relevant sites.

So despite Zoom apparently being a budget airline, it is still trying to offer some kind of customer service - even in the face of financial collapse.

Kevin May, editor, Travolution

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Dominic said...

They had one of the Boyle founders on Radio 5 last night. I thought he came across well - obviously shocked with the speed of their demise but gave a seemingly honest account of the situation and offered what advice he could to stranded passengers.

Nathan Midgley said...

One thing bothers me about those announcements - they're always pars and pars of apologies with advice kinda mixed in somewhere.

Customers surely want quick, easy-to-read advice first - clear crossheads, bullet points, blah blah - and lengthy apologies second. Which isn't to say the apologies aren't important or genuine.

Darren Cronian said...

I agree with Nathan re. all of the paragraphs of blah and not enough information.

That's probably the reason why consumers have found blogs like Travel Rants useful.

The Oasis Hongkong post had over 50 comments from consumers who documented their experiences of trying to get a refund.

I've started a post off this morning about Zoom and already started to get some comments.

Interestingly, a member of staff from Zoom has offered to help by answering questions on the blog.