Turkish Airlines analyzes the results of a survey on recent trends in passenger preferences


Turkish Airlines continues to examine the attitudes of air travelers annually before, during and after the trip as a routine method. For the latest Turkish Airlines Aviation Trends study, the renowned market research institute Nielsen surveyed a total of 8,150 individuals aged 18 years and older who have flown with an airline company in the last 2 years in an online poll. Respondents from China, France, Germany, India, Japan, South Africa, Sweden, the UAE, the UK and the US participated in the survey during 16-26 February 2018.

Not everything that is technologically possible is also desired by airline passengers. For instance, a majority of airline passengers in the UK, the US, Japan, France, Sweden and Germany are opposed to airlines allowing mobile phone usage during flight. Among these countries, approval of allowing mobile phone usage ranges from a mere 36% in Germany to 48% in the UK. The reason: passengers mind the potential nuisance and disturbance (USA: 89%, Japan: 93%) or do not think it is necessary to be permanently available (Germany: 69%). However, the rate of passengers in favour of allowing mobile phone usage in flight is significantly higher in India (73%), China (70%), and the UAE (63%). The global average is 51%.

For the future of air travel, more comfortable seating as well as free and fast internet access are passengers’ most important expectations, as the survey further shows. Scores of both increased significantly compared to previous period. Sleeping compartments come third on the wish list for future aviation. Commenting on the results, M. İlker Aycı, Turkish Airlines Chairman of the Board and the Executive Committee, stated: “We strive to provide our passengers with the best travel experience and hospitality to make their journeys memorable. For this reason, we are monitoring the latest trends and innovations in the civil aviation industry very closely. The results of the Global Aviation Trends 2017 survey show once again that with our services we are a global leader in civil aviation.”

When it comes to the question of who to trust in recommendations the survey makes clear that passengers’ own experiences are key (70%). Friends and acquaintances (57%) as well as travel comparison portals (40%) come second and third.

When no direct flights are available for an intercontinental journey, a surprisingly large proportion of passengers (36%) would prefer to depart from the airport nearest to them and transfer at a foreign airport instead of taking a domestic flight, train, bus or car to a larger domestic airport from where non-stop flights are available (42%). In France, the proportion of respondents preferring departure from the nearest airport and transfer at a hub abroad is even larger than the proportion of respondents preferring the domestic travel option, with 43% and 32%, respectively.

Most airline passengers (69%) prefer all–inclusive prices rather than a cheaper base price, especially in South Africa, Sweden, and India and increasingly so in Japan and the US. Convenience is the main reason (72%) for preferring the all-inclusive price option, above all in India (91%), China (78%), and South Africa (78%). While waiting at the gate, passengers place particular importance at timely information about delays and their reasons (95%), an additional contact person in case of delays (87%), and free charging stations for devices such as laptop or mobile phones (87%).

During flight, the cleanliness of the cabin and lavatories (96%) is the top expectation in all countries. Friendly, attentive and accessible staff (94%) and the quality of food and beverages (94%) come after cabin cleanliness. Regarding passengers’ expectations on board, the opportunity to drink water is the most prevalent (90%). The presence of healthy food is also important (83%). Both expectations are higher in the UAE and India.

After the flight, an uncomplicated delivery service for lost luggage (92%) is passengers’ highest expectation, especially in South Africa (96%), China (95%) and the UAE (94%). What passengers appreciate the most about their previous flights are the aircraft cabin’s hygiene or cleanness (91%) as well as the behaviors and attitudes of the cabin crew (91%). This is followed by the sufficiency of light in the cabin (91%), the catering quality (75%) and the comfort of the seats (72%).