Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Slowdown and the aviation sector
The recent slowdown witnessed by the global economies(recession to be fair)including the Indian economy had its perilious impact on all the industries. Aviation sector was the one which was badly affected globally. Many filed for bankruptcy, while a most of them had been negatively impacted which resulted in drastic cost cutting measures.Being a frequent flier on the India-Gulf Cooperation Council route apart from within the Indian skies, I observed that most of the renowned Indian airlines, including those which were the darling of the stakeholders not a few months back, were suddenly trying to reduce their operational cost to such an extent that a frequent flier having a loyalty status with those airlines started to feel the heat.Things became obvious and it was visible to my eyes that the airlines were trying to move into the black through all means. What was painful though was the fact that these airlines weren't understanding the fact that the targeted heads to reduce the cost won't fetch them a big return and instead would threaten their brand image in the long run.The sense of complacency was even felt in their services quality, as the routine on-board and ground services were different from that of the normal situations.May be cost cutting right, left and center had a rubbing effect on the staff as they themselves started to feel the heat, and therefore moved away from the routine courteous way of serving the passengers.On the contrary airlines like Oman Air aggressively expanded their routes in the European sector by acquiring state-of-the-art aircraft, by enhancing their level of services.The major difference between these two claases of airlines were-One thought recession is permanent and the other thought it was momentary and so shouldn't tinker with the basic business fundamentals.