Why Canadian Airline WestJet has a Loyal Customer Base

Canadian airline, WestJet, has found the perfect way to appeal to customers. The company believes that just because you pay less, does not mean you should expect less. WestJet has proved to be one of the most innovative airlines in Canada and internationally. WestJet’s business philosophy includes focus on its guests, employees, and social media.

Over the past few years, WestJet has developed a strong social media presence. Not only does the company intend to provide flight information, but the social media presence offers guests (and future guests) the chance to see how fun flying with WestJet can be. The strong social media presence reflects the attitude of the flight crew as well as providing important and helpful information to guests. The fun and care for guests does not stop with social media, but extends to each flight. The staff at WestJet (from ticket agents to baggage handlers, to flight crew, to the heads of the company) genuinely want their customers to have a carefree and enjoyable time during travel.

WestJet has proved how employee happiness leads to positive customer service. The company has grown considerably in its 20 years of flight travel. The employees of WestJet (“WestJetters”) and the customers appreciate all of the effort, innovation and integrity that the WestJet invests in the company. Here is why WestJet’s Customer’s Love Them.

WestJet, Ltd

WestJet, Ltd. was founded in 1996 by Clive Beddoe and like-minded partners. The company believed that passengers deserved to be treated well, and just because they pay less for a flight, does not mean they should get less during air travel. The company believes in loyalty, not only, to customers, but to staff as well. Over the past 20 years, WestJet has become one of the most innovative and popular airlines in Canada, and perhaps the world.

WestJet’s first flight took off on February 29, 1996. At that time it had just 3 aircraft, 5 destinations, and 220 employees (WestJetters). The airline has grown. Today, it has a fleet of several young aircrafts, over 88 destinations, and 9700 WestJetters. WestJet’s fleet now includes a 767, a Disney “Frozen” themed plane, “The Magic Plane”, “The West Jet Encore” and other modern planes.

WestJet’s belief has always been “Owners Care”. They do. They care about their guests, passengers and the environment. WestJet takes great steps to avoid impact on the environment of the places they fly. WestJet treats their employees well. WestJet treats their guests well. In recent years, WestJet has found ways to make the airline user friendly. Today, WestJet has a strong social media presence, including a YouTube channel, which is appealing to today’s flyers.

WestJet values safety, honesty, passion, and connecting guests and employees to the company’s values. WestJet has received many accolades and top rankings. In 2010, WestJet was designated as a J.D. Power Customer Service Champion. The airline ranks 3rd in Aron Hewitt’s “Best Employees in Canada”. The company was chosen the “Canadian Airline with the Best Flight Attendants” by flightnetwork.com. It has been chosen as Canada’s “Preferred Airline”.

The owners of WestJet believe in the highest of standards. These are applied to both their guests and their employees who they feel should be respected and admired. The airline believes in the importance of safety, affordability and enjoyment in air travel.

Employees

One of the main philosophies of West Jet is that their employees enjoy their jobs. If the employees are happy, that will reflect the airline, and customer service will be the best. WestJet believes that flying should be “fun again”. Harkening back to the beginning of passenger air travel 30 to 40 years ago, WestJet wants their flight crew to have engaged relationships with its passengers. WestJetters are treated well and the result is smiling faces and friendliness from ticket agents to baggage handlers to flight crew. Dressed in bright colors with smiling faces and a great attitude, WestJetters bring back the time when flying was an exciting experience where air travelers were treated with respect.

Customer Service

Customer service is one of the most important aspects of WestJet’s beliefs. Employees naturally connect with customers. The employees of WestJet are engaged with passengers and aim to provide them with a memorable travel experience. Providing customers with a unique, fun experience and meeting the needs of guests is important to WestJet. Connecting with guests is of utmost importance. On one flight, a passenger found that the airline’s actual CFO, Vito Culmone, gave the opening announcements. He proceeded to take a seat in one of the back rows of the plane and engaged with passengers throughout the flight. He even stepped up and helped the flight attendants pass out drinks. Instead of getting feed- back from forms or e-mail surveys, Mr. Culmone simply spoke with passengers to get feedback. This is the kind of thing that WestJet does. They take a genuine and hands on approach to find ways to make passengers happy and comfortable.

Social Media

An important way that WestJet connects passengers, employees and owners is through social media. The development of WestJet’s social media presence is amazing. It obviously appeals to the “mobile generation” and has proven to be a valuable tool for the airline to connect with its customers.

WestJet has a “Social Care Team” that provides more than just information on flight times or delays. The Team is directly connected to the Operations Control Center and has real-time access to flight activity and other information that could impact travelers. The Team operates 24/7 to assist travelers, understanding that travelers are in different time zones. Each member of the “Social Care Team” has a unique background that can be useful to answer passenger questions.

One member is a former flight attendant who can give information on everything from snacks served during flights to how to calm an infant during flight. A former member of the ground crew can answer questions about baggage. Other members of the “Social Care Team” provide information on flight schedules, destinations, baggage information and aircraft.

One of the most successful innovations of WestJet is its presence on social media. The airline has interactive Facebook and Twitter sites. WestJet is also one of the few airlines to offer a YouTube channel to provide entertainment as well as flight information. WestJet’s YouTube channel has reached and entertained people throughout the world.

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