Flight benefits are baloney.

Well, not really, it is a privilege to have the opportunity to see the world, to give my children amazing life experiences and to be able to share this benefit with friends through travel companionship and buddy passes. With that said, there is an issue, let me rephrase that, an opportunity.

Design thinking.

I consider design thinking a power approach to problem solving. The basic foundations of design thinking are:

Empathize: Understanding guests behaviours and needs.
Define: Identify problems and transform goals to tasks.
Ideate: Generate a range of solutions
Prototype: Functional low or high fidelity experiences.
Test: Fail fast and improve.

The issue.

Flight benefits are made through a separate website, with a separate flow and separate from guests. And while you could argue that the needs of the user are different, an important question needs to be asked.

“How can we truly empathize with our guests if we don’t even use our own product?”

We fly (a lot), but our product is not just a seat on a plane. We must consider the end to end experience. Circumventing the digital experience for our own personal use is a gap we unfortunately overlook.

The opportunity.

This leads me to some reflections:

  • Bookings should be made through the normal booking flow to create insights about the guest experience. We will develop greater understanding of guest pain points and be able to solution quicker.
  • Use employee bookings for testing initiatives. Run riskier experiments – employees who have a vested interest would be more inclined to provide feedback. Create a culture of ideation not limited to the digital team.
  • Encourage use of competitors booking flow. Understand what is going on in the world and avoid the blinders we sometimes wear.

The more we use our own product the stronger the connection we can build with our guests.