Philippine Airlines’ Success to Quality Services : A WebQuest on Total Quality Management

Introduction

Philippine Airlines, also known as PAL, is a world renowned airline whose dominance to other functioning airlines present in the country was visible ever since it was formed. It became an airline of standard for all we know during its road to success. Its main headquarters is located in Pasay City whilst the main airline hub is in Manila City. 

Read more about PAL’s details at this website: https://www.rehlat.ae/en/airlines/philippines/philippine-airlines-tickets-online-booking/

Philippine Airlines was first established in February 1941 and is considered currently the first and oldest Asian commercial airline running in the Philippines. It is owned by PAL Holdings and for some time, it instantly became known to be a “Filipino flag carrier” of the Philippines’ aviation industry. A lot has happened ever since its formation yet, it still continues with a very great reputation. 

Read more about PAL’s history and reputation here at: http://www.gsair.it/en/customers/philippine-airlines.html and https://airwaysmag.com/today-in-aviation/philippine-airlines-is-founded/ 

This airline provides domestic and international flights in which through the years since its foundation, the success in its consistency made a lot of enhancement to what the airline has become. The quality management's excellence made the airline become one of the few airlines globally, to receive a 4-star rating from skytrax, an organization known to be an international rating organization for flights done, now achieving a 5-star rating for the year 2021 amidst the pandemic from the US-based Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX). It is truly fascinating that through this Web Quest, the readers will see how Philippine Airlines managed to sustain its good reputation given that a lot of competitors arose as the years went by. We can explore the uniqueness of this establishment’s operation, provided we see what Philippine Airlines offers to its flight passengers. What makes Philippine Airlines top-notch? What made it an airline of choice? How is it different from other airlines in the country? Let us see as we explore Philippine Airlines' strong points.

Read more about PAL’s skytrax and APEX  achievement at:https://www.philippineairlines.com/AboutUs/flypal4stars-index and https://mb.com.ph/2020/12/21/pal-wins-5-star-major-airline-rating/

Task

By the end of this web quest, you should be able to answer the question “Why do Filipino people choose Philippine Airlines as their airline of choice?”

Vision

As a company in an ever-competitive industry, of course PAL would want to be able to grab hold of the majority of the market share, if not the whole market share. In order to fill up such big goals, it is necessary for PAL to be able to provide such great service to its returning customers as well as potential customers. A vision must not only be realistic but as well symbolic to what the essence of the company is. PAL is not only an airline company, but it is a Philippine-based company, and comes with a sense of patriotism that is unrivaled, which is why they include in their vision to be a source of pride for fellow Pinoys everywhere. Another reason as to why they add to this is because they are an airline company that not only serves domestic flights, but as well cater to those who want to fly abroad, which is why they would want to hold themselves up to such prestige, since they are to be recognized across the globe.

Mission

In starting a company, you have to think about how you want to obtain it. A mission is a way for you and the employees to know the reason why it started in the first place. In this kind of market you have many competitors that you have to keep putting yourself on top of the game. One unique mission that Philippine Airlines has is to serve the Filipino’s all over the world and to be recognized as the top airline company in the Philippine. As the Philippine Airline theme song says, “The heart of the Filipino, shining through, Philippine Airlines, shining through,” they don’t just serve for the wonders of the Philippines to be known, but, they serve with hospitality and respect. They provide extra care to customers to have a pleasant stay on board and to exceed their expectations. 

Read more at:

 https://phi.com.ph/vision-mission-and-core-values/

https://www.segmentationstudyguide.com/understanding-market-segmentation/market-segmentation-examples/market-segmentation-example-airlines/

 

Identify Key Customer Group

  • Frequent travellers (family, couples and solo flyers)

  • Businessman (who frequently travel because of work)

  • Urgent travellers (people who travel for the sake of urgency)

  • Loyalty travellers (regular airline travellers who have a high brand loyalty to Philippine Airlines)

  • Budget conscious travellers (people who benefit from the affordable airfare of PAL)

Read more at https://www.philippineairlines.com/en/aboutus/legalnotices/commitmenttocustomerpr2p/commitmenttocustomer

Process

TQM for Philippine Airlines

Philippine Airlines, Inc. (PAL), as one of the few airlines globally to have acquired a 4-Star Rating from Skytrax and has recently received also a 5-Star Rating from APEX, managed to achieve their success through their commitment with their total quality management dedicated to bringing a world-class product and an excellent quality service experience to its customers and passengers. This success is a key result of a multi-year top-to-bottom end-to-end enhancement of the organization. 

As a company focused in serving not only a safe flight, but as well as a comfortable one, PAL includes the importance of putting forth the customers over anything else, since that is an airline company, not only they must ensure the safety of their customers, but also, they must serve their customers a stress and hassle free flight from point A to point B. In every flight, there must be a crew assigned. The quality performance of the crew in serving their passengers, directly affects the overall feedback of the passenger during the flight. This includes the smoothness/calmness of the whole crew when faced with challenges, the amicable temperament of the flight attendants tending to the passengers during the flight. All of these factors directly affect the satisfaction rating of the passengers which will affect the choice whether they wish to fly again with PAL or just fly with another airline on their next flight. 

When in a large multi-national company like PAL, it is inevitable that one is to be overloaded with many tasks to do in every business day, which is why PAL has explicitly listed in its core values the value of having passion and an aim for excellence, reason is that when faced with a lot of work, it is passion that keeps one motivated, and an aim for excellence is simply necessary since mediocrity does not take one far in the tourism industry. Also, in such a large company, progress is constant, as a publicly liable company, PAL is always in the limelight, always liable to criticism of the public. 

As an airline company, progression is definitely a must.  As a Filipino company, in line to their vision, PAL includes in its core values the exemplification of the best of the Filipino Spirit, surrounding the well-renowned Filipino quality, hospitality.

 

Evaluation

Other than being the Philippines’ National Flag Carrier and the first airline in all of Asia, Philippine Airlines (PAL) continues to take steps toward becoming a 5-star airline as they upgrade to a more advanced passenger system. The airline launched a more reliable and passenger-friendly system that is designed for customers’ needs. The Filipino People choose PAL for its commitment to customer satisfaction, great service, accommodation booking and special offers, and so much more. It truly is one of the Philippines’ Pride.

Read more at: https://www.philstar.com/business/2019/02/23/1895934/philippine-airlines-upgrading-passenger-system-service

TQM Activities and Strategies

  1. Orderliness Through Flight Operations

  • Notifying Customers of Known Delays, Cancellations, and Diversions – PAL endeavors to bring their customers to their final destination as scheduled. They immediately notify their customers if their flight is delayed, cancelled, or diverted due to unwanted circumstances that are beyond their control. PAL prioritizes their customer’s safety and well-being.

  • Provision of Services to Alleviate Inconveniences from Flight Disruptions – PAL endeavors to call and notify affected passengers of flight disruptions using the contact information provided and reflected on booking records.

  • PAL also allows customers to cancel ticketed reservations without penalty and receive a one hundred (100%) refund, provided the ticketed reservation is cancelled within twenty-four (24) hours of purchase, and further, the purchase is made one (1) week or more prior to the scheduled flight departure.

  • Baggage Delivery – PAL endeavors to make their customers and their baggage travel together. The airline exerts their best efforts when it comes to conflicts with their customers and their baggage. They will deliver their customer’s baggage within 24 hours, with reimbursement for any fee changed to transport a bag if that bag is lost if ever an instance of baggage mishandling such as delayed or missing baggage.

  • Expeditious Processing of Refunds – PAL ensures that, subject to ticket restrictions, refunds are processed once the airline receives a complete set of required documents.

  • Quick Response to Customer Complaints – One of the reasons why the Filipino People choose PAL is that the airline quickly responds to customer’s complaints and truly welcomes customer feedback. In addition to this, they have several avenues on how customers may air their complaints.

  •  Provision of Services to Alleviate Inconveniences from Flight Disruptions – PAL endeavors to call and notify affected passengers of flight disruptions using the contact information provided and reflected on booking records.

PAL has made it to the point wherein all variables are considered for passengers to feel the comfort and convenience of their payment being worthwhile. Given that the quality service that PAL provides is within customer expectation.

  1. Inclusivity Through Special Services

  • One of PAL’s strong points in quality service is that they especially made policies concerning giving assistance to whomever needs it the most. It is part of the airline’s identity to provide assistance without bias to anyone acquiring a flight. Listed below are the following Special Services PAL Caters:

  • Expectant Mothers - Every expectant mother without any pregnancy complications shall be accepted as a normal passenger without needing to submit a medical clearance after the  Expectant Mothers Information Sheet (EMIS) to the airlines. 

  • Passengers with Allergies (nut) - Passengers with allergies need to notify PAL for requests for special nut free meals. Though, passengers may also bring their own meal for the duration of flight. Yet, PAL has no assurance that the flight will be allergen free. Passengers are also advised to bring their medications or devices for its precautionary measures.

  • PWDs and Senior Citizens - In PAL, the utmost priority is to give excellent service to its passengers especially to the PWD and senior citizens. In order for PAL to know you will be needing their assistance, the passenger should file the “Disability Assistance Form” within 48 hours notice before the passengers flight. PAL staff will be assisting elderly passengers from their origin to its port of destination. From preparing special meals for you needs to assisting you throughout the journey in air. 

  • Travelling with Infants - PAL also gives special assistance to infants who will be travelling on board but there are conditions before getting on board. The “Child Restraint System” should be approved for the infant to accommodate the seat or use of special needs for infant inflight.

  • Unaccompanied Minors - Independent passengers who are 8-11 years old are expected to be approved first by the ‘authority to travel’ clearance of DSWD and will be given incentives like a choice of refund if he/she is, for instance, not wishing to pursue the travel.

  • Special Assistance to Wheelchair Users or Disability Seatings - Passengers with disabilities may select their own seats 24 hours advance through the reservation hotline or any PAL ticket office. The complimentary wheelchair service may avail with an escort by the elderly passengers and passengers with disabilities. Passengers without medical conditions do not need to submit a medical form to request for a wheelchair,  while the passengers with medical conditions will be required to do so.

  • Service Dogs - For a flight, dogs are the only animals approved by the airlines, it's supposed to be in the maximum of 2 and is qualified to be acknowledged as trained service dogs. The dog should be able to fit the disabled passenger’s lap. If it goes over that, the passenger will be asked to move into another empty seat.

  • The US Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) - In compliance with 14 CFR Part 382 pursuant to the US ACAA, the passengers are provided with continuous flights in the same aircraft from starting and finishing from US Airport only.

  • VISA Waiver Program - Provides VISA help for travelling to the US, Guam, Canada and New Zealand.

  • Child Restraint System - For the security of children below 2 years old or between 2-7 years old, a child restraint system is offered to parents/guardians for their children to have high levels of security. Yet, they are encouraged to purchase their own for convenience approval purposes.

Read more at:

 https://www.philippineairlines.com/en/travelinformation/beforeyoufly/specialhandling

  1. Accommodation and Booking System

  • Unlike other Filipino-owned airlines, only PAL serves 31 destinations in the Philippines and 41 overseas destinations in Southeast Asia, East Asia, Middle East, Oceania, North America, and Europe.

  • PAL adopts a new ticketing, booking system. The airline now uses Altea PSS of Span’s Amadeus for check-in, booking, ticketing, and boarding process. The new system serves as the airline’s technology backbone. The new technology is a more reliable and passenger-friendly system that is designed for the needs of PAL’s customers. With the new system, customers could expect a faster check-in process, easier booking and automated recognition of their preferences and smoother transfers to connecting flights.

  • The airline’s online booking features an automated facility called “Calendar Pricing” which immediately displays the lowest fare available for over a seven-day range – three days before and three days after the planned travel date – thus allowing travelers to decide quickly when it is most convenient and cheapest to fly. They also accept booking of flights and purchasing tickets in PAL’s domestic and international itineraries. Selected International codeshare flights are available through their online booking facility. Users can immediately check for fares and flight availability without the need to register or login. 

  • The airline also improved business class experience on long-haul flights and as premium economy service on their Airbus A350s and select A330s.

  • PAL introduced more convenient nonstop routes to New York, Auckland, Toronto, Sapporo, and Brisbane.

  • PAL enhanced their inflight meals, onboard entertainment systems, long-haul duvet service and cabin mood-lighting

 Read more at: 

https://www.philippineairlines.com/en/JP/home/AboutUs/LegalNotices/CommitmentToCustomerPR2P/CommitmentToCustomer

https://business.inquirer.net/265522/pal-adopts-new-ticketing-booking-system

https://www.philippineairlines.com/FAQs/OnlineBooking

  1. Special Offers Services

  • PAL offers seat sales where they offer the best deals and the lowest ticket price, especially during off peak seasons. They offer various rates depending on class and needs of passengers, especially with baggage allowance needs and concerns.

  • They also offer anniversary sales, like they offer discounts depending on their number of years in business. They also offer promos themed with our national holidays like Independence Day. 

  • PAL introduced its latest ancillary inflight offering myPAL surprise, which will enable passengers to pre-order gifts for their loved ones. Customers will simply have to place a gift order at least three days in advance through any PAL ticket office, hotline or through boutique.philippinearlines.com. On the day of the flight, the gifts will be personally delivered by PAL flight attendants to recipients. The surprise will come gift-wrapped and with a personal message in a greeting card. 

Read more at: https://www.futuretravelexperience.com/2017/06/philippine-airlines-introduces-ancillary-inflight-offering-mypal/

Conclusion

Philippine Airlines is now a 5-star major airline rating that continues to bloom the Philippine’s aviation industry despite the pandemic. With its consistency in serving what the customers rightfully deserve throughout the 8 decades they have been serving to myriads of tourists, PAL indeed gained the trust of the Filipino people to become their airline of choice. With its competitiveness and commitment to provide total quality service and experience, Philippine Airlines will firmly secure its reputation and will continue to pave the way for its success.

 

Credits

Wadagency.it. (n.d.). Philippine Airlines. Gs Air | Philippine Airlines. http://www.gsair.it/en/customers/philippine-airlines.html.

A big win for the Philippines -- Dr. Lucio Tan. (n.d.). #flyPAL4Stars. https://www.philippineairlines.com/AboutUs/flypal4stars-index.

H. V., By, -, Helwing VillamizarChief Online Editor at Airways Magazine, Villamizar, H., Chief Online Editor at Airways Magazine, Kochan Kleps - May 27, -, K. K., Gabriel Neves - May 27, -, G. N., Thomas Becher - May 27, & -, T. B. (2021, February 26). Today in Aviation: Philippine Airlines is Founded. Airways Magazine. https://airwaysmag.com/today-in-aviation/philippine-airlines-is-founded/.

Rehlat. (n.d.). Philippine Airlines Booking. https://www.rehlat.ae/en/airlines/philippines/philippine-airlines-tickets-online-booking/.

NA (n.d.), Philippine Airlines Commitment to Customer Satisfaction. https://www.philippineairlines.com/en/JP/home/AboutUs/LegalNotices/CommitmentToCustomerPR2P/CommitmentToCustomer

PAL Holdings, Inc. (2021, January 13). Vision Mission and Core Values. PHI. https://phi.com.ph/vision-mission-and-core-values/

Process, T. S., Process?, W. I. T. S., Process, T. S., & Process?, W. I. T. S. (2015, February 11). Market segmentation example for airlines - Market. Segmentation Study Guide. https://www.segmentationstudyguide.com/understanding-market-segmentation/market-segmentation-examples/market-segmentation-example-airlines/

Philippine Airlines Commitment to Customer Satisfaction. (n.d.). Philippine Airlines Commitment to Customer Satisfaction. Retrieved May 29, 2021, from https://www.philippineairlines.com/en/aboutus/legalnotices/commitmenttocustomerpr2p/commitmenttocustomer

Philippine Airlines certified as a 4-Star Airline. (n.d.). Philippine Airlines. Retrieved from https://www.philippineairlines.com/en/AboutUs/flyPAL4Stars

Camus, M. (2019, February 23). PAL adopts new ticketing, booking system. https://business.inquirer.net/265522/pal-adopts-new-ticketing-booking-system

 Mercurio, R. (2019, February 23). Philippine Airlines upgrading passenger system service. https://www.philstar.com/business/2019/02/23/1895934/philippine-airlines-upgrading-passenger-system-service

 NA (n.d.). Philippine Airline Online Booking. https://www.philippineairlines.com/FAQs/OnlineBooking

NA (2017, June). Philippine Airlines introduces ancillary inflight offering myPAL Surprise. https://www.futuretravelexperience.com/2017/06/philippine-airlines-introduces-ancillary-inflight-offering-mypal/

Special Handling. Philippine Airlines. (n.d.). https://www.philippineairlines.com/en/travelinformation/beforeyoufly/sp…

Abadilla, E. V. (2020, December 21). PAL Wins 5-Star major airline rating. Manila Bulletin. https://mb.com.ph/2020/12/21/pal-wins-5-star-major-airline-rating/.