Kuala Lumpur, 15 August 2014 – TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel site*, today announced the results of its inaugural air travel survey of more than 1,200 respondents1 from Southeast Asia. Travellers in the region are a well-travelled bunch, with 96 per cent of travellers planning flights abroad in 2014, up from 94 per cent in 2013.

“Interest in international flights continues to rise despite some persistent air travel frustrations, such as uncomfortable seats, limited leg room and unpredictable flight changes but we are also seeing some positive signs as flyers report easier booking and more flight routes that help improve the traveller experience,” said Andrew Wong, regional director of TripAdvisor Flights, APAC.

 

Uncomfortable Seats Voted Top Air Travel Complaint

The top five flyer complaints about air travel are as follows, with uncomfortable seats or limited legroom topping the list:

  1. Uncomfortable seats / limited legroom – 61%
  2. Unpredictable flight delays / cancellations – 50%
  3. Costly airline fees and ticket prices – 50%
  4. Long security lines – 43%
  5. Loud / crying children – 42%

When travellers were asked which amenities would most improve their in-flight experience, their answers reflected these frustrations: “more legroom” (28 per cent) and “more comfortable seats” (24 per cent) were their top answers. For long-haul flights of over four hours, 80 per cent of travellers are willing to pay an additional fee for extra legroom. As for those frustrated by loud and crying children, 48 per cent of respondents would pay to sit in a child-free section.

 

Improvements in Booking and More Affordable Flight Options

Travellers were asked about air travel improvements over the past five years and an easier booking process was the top choice. Although costly airline fees and ticket prices are common air travel complaints, flyers have also noted that more affordable flights have become available in the last five years.

The top five biggest improvements in air travel:

  1. Easier booking – 63%
  2. More affordable flights – 49%
  3. More flight routes / options – 45%
  4. More streamlined check-in process – 38%
  5. Better in-flight entertainment options – 25%

 

Flyers Checking In then Logging Off on Their Mobile

The top three uses of mobile devices by travellers include “research flight prices” (57 per cent), “check-in to flights” (56 per cent) and “check flight status” (54 per cent).

Once in the air, travellers are less eager to go online with 95 per cent who say they rarely or never purchase their carrier’s inflight Wi-Fi service.

 

Malaysia’s AirAsia was Named Favourite Low-Cost Airline

Amongst the many airlines that fly within the region, travellers in Southeast Asia have named AirAsia, Malaysia’s home-grown budget airline, their low cost carrier of preference.

 

TripAdvisor Flights Helps Flyers Book Wisely

TripAdvisor Flight Search helps travellers find not only the cheapest flights but to also make the best booking decisions. TripAdvisor Flights show thousands of cabin photos, including those from Malaysia Airlines and AirAsia, and almost all international carriers flying to Malaysia. In addition, TripAdvisor shows colour coded maps from SeatGuru, the largest aircraft map review site in the world. Other information such as airline ratings, legroom by airline and aircraft type as well as aircraft seat ratings are also available. Travellers can try out these features at www.tripadvisor.com.my/CheapFlightsHome.

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