Emirates tops Iranians' dream airline list
Dubai, October 18, 2012
Dubai's national carrier Emirates is the most favourite airline among Iranians depite its tickets being costlier than the local alternatives mainly Iran Air, Mahan Air and Iran Aseman Airlines, said a survey.
The survey, conducted by Chimigi, Iran’s first online research panel, benchmarks the travel frequency and preferences of religious, leisure and business travelers in the country.
The syndicated travel & tourism study, 'The Iranian Traveler' is the second in a series of online studies intended to create greater transparency for both foreign and local companies on the attitudes and behaviours of Iranians consumers and professionals.
The sample included 870 respondents who currently live in Iran and was fielded between October 4 and 7.
Respondents were asked which airlines they flew with in the past two years, as well as which carrier they favoured most as a brand. Unsurprising of the popularity of Dubai as a hotspot destination for leisure and business travelers, Emirates found itself unrivaled in the charts, the survey stated.
"Despite the fact that tickets for the airline are notably more expensive than the Iran Air, Mahan Air, and Iran Aseman Airlines, Iranians still patently favour the UAE brand, " it added.
However, when asked which factors mattered most when choosing an airline, 26 per cent said prices stood well above reputation (15 per cent), followed by the quality of flight attendant service (13 per cent), and luxury (13 per cent).
“The majority of Iranians may choose to travel according to the more affordable rates offered by their local airlines,” reveaaled Amir-Esmaeil Bozorgzadeh, the managing partner at Conovi, the parent company behind the Iranian online research panel.
“Yet they still hold on to the prospect of flying with Emirates and appreciate the brand regardless of their choice to go with the alternatives,” he stated.
When asked which regions they travel to regularly, the GCC clinched the top spot at 31 per cent, followed by Asia (26 per cent), Western Europe (21 per cent), Eastern Europe (14 per cent), and the Levant (13 per cent).
The majority of respondents stay at hotels while traveling (78 per cent), of which 19 per cent choose to stay at 5-star properties, versus 4-star (41 per cent) and 3-star (25 per cent).
When respondents were surveyed on the popularity of hotel brands, Hilton and Sheraton were the only two international names to stand at double-digit percentiles. In terms of what matters to Iranian travelers most when choosing a hotel, price (35 per cent) and a variety of amenities (31 per cent) were favoured above other factors like location (15 per cent) and luxury (10 per cent).
Respondents were segmented according to three core motives for traveling at least once a year, be it leisure (81 per cent), business (47 per cent), and/or religious tourism (39 per cent) as its basis.
About 48 per cent of leisure travelers venture off on a holiday at least once every few months, and 17 per cent travel at least once or more each month.
The demographics of the audience consisted of a highly educated audience, 76 per cent of which possess a bachelors degree or higher (20 per cent hold a masters degree). Twenty per cent are 18-24 years of age, 53 per cent between 25-34, and 24 per cent between 35-54.-TradeArabia News Service