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Gulf Air to takes lead role at Iceland summit

Manama, June 13, 2011

Bahrain's national carrier Gulf Air will once again take a lead role at the upcoming 'Worldwide Airlines Customer Relations Association' (Wacra) conference to be held in Iceland.

Gulf Air said the announcement was made at the Wacra’s regional board meeting in London held last month.

Gulf Air Senior Manager Customer Care & Service Quality Control Kavita Sharma Jassim, who is also the chairperson of Wacra, will be chairing the conference in Iceland capital Reykjavik from September 11 to 14.

Over 80 people representing more than 50 airlines from across the globe will be attending, said Samer Majali, CEO of Gulf Air, renowned for championing role of customer relations.

'Customers are our mainstay without whom we don’t have a business; therefore, it is imperative that we ensure and maintain high levels of customer service and relations,' he noted.

'As customers’ preferences keep changing, Gulf Air’s representation at the Wacra summit will further enable us to exchange ideas and benefit from other member airlines’ experiences so that we remain on top in delivering world-class customer service,' he added.

Jassim, who has just returned from Wacra regional board meeting in London, said,“Wacra has been spearheading and driving customer service and relations among global airlines through continuous interactions and exchange of ideas.'

'This year’s conference has a special significance as it is being held in the country, where the (in) famous Icelandic volcano ash cloud incident occurred last year, and this year made a significant impact on several airlines’ operations,' Jassim noted.

Aviation, she said, was one of the most volatile industries in the world plagued by a number of uncertainties: rising fuel prices, natural disasters, geo-political developments and many others.

'Passengers are the first to be affected in such situations but as a service industry, we have to ensure they are least affected by providing the best customer service possible,' she remarked.

'At the event, Wacra member airlines as well as representatives from the host country Iceland’s tourism board, will share their experience on how the situation was dealt with in terms of customer service and learn lessons for the future,' said Jassim.

'The conference theme has been appropriately named as Fire and Ice - Energizing the Customer Experience,' she added.

“Above all, it is a great opportunity for us to project the Kingdom and its national carrier, Gulf Air at the international forum, sharing our six decades of experience in the business,” Jassim stated. 

'The event will also discuss other relevant topics such as the best ways to deal with customer complaints, the correlation between customer care and branding, how customer care can be used as a marketing tool, how to handle social media complaints, how to look at the state of self-service technology in our industry and the concept of Mystery Shopping, which is becoming more popular in the world of customer care.'

The other Wacra board members are Dr Barry Green from Etihad Airways, John Sam from Air France, Pushpa Subramanium representing Malaysia Airlines, Lucy Van Djik-Balk from Martinair, Sigvaldi Porisson from Icelandair and Dan Thompson representing Continental Airlines.-TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Gulf Air | Conference | Iceland | WACRA | Customer relations |

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