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Flyers Care More About Discounts Than Legroom, Survey Says

hand holding the piggy bank at the lounge airport

Survey shows that travel discounts are of higher priority to passengers than extra legroom, priority boarding, and other perks.

A survey conducted by Chicago-based transportation firm GO Group, LLC, has found that travelers strongly prefer discounts over other perks when flying.

Organized by GO Group companies GO Airport Express, a ground transportation service, and GO Airport Shuttle, an international transportation provider, the survey showed that discounts far outranked legroom, priority boarding, and free food. Nearly 50 percent of respondents said they would opt for credit toward their next ticket purchase over the other incentives offered.

The survey presented a fictional scenario in which participants could choose from the four options. Ticket credit was the clear winner, followed by extra legroom at 32 percent, priority boarding at 11 percent, and free meals in last place at 9 percent. Over 850 men and women of different age groups responded; no significant differences were found based on age or gender.

Write-in responses were permitted. These showed that travelers were also interested in upgrades to first class, access to airport lounges, and the option to be the only passenger on a plane.

“Traveling economically still seems to be a priority,” said GO Airport Express president John McCarthy.

The GO Group, LLC, provides shared-ride shuttles and private cars at more than 60 airports worldwide. It is the United States’ largest airport transportation provider and serves approximately 13 million travelers each year. GO Airport Express is one of the oldest companies in Chicago, dating back to 1853 with the founding of the Parmalee Transportation Company.

[Photo: iStock]

 

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11 Comments
E
emsel October 28, 2015

Have you flew in Europe lately? I flew from ZHR to CPH on Swiss. I didn't pay for checked luggage, because I bought my ticket in May. Any ticket bought after June 10th carries a checked luggage charge.

October 27, 2015

People checking in luggage or paying regular fares should get automatic refunds if their flights are delayed because the discount fare flyers couldn't find overhead bins for their numerous bags and had to plane check their luggage. I hardly see delays due to lack of overhead bin space flying in Europe with their free checked bag policy.

I
ioto1902 October 27, 2015

Another survey sold at a high price by consultants to comfort airlines in their preconceived ideas. Of course price is important. In front of the computer, you are very happy to have found a very low price. And then, once at the airport, reality catches you. Begins the "regrets" phase : I shouldn't have done that, I knew there would be ancillary fees, I knew I'd be squashed between two seats, ... They should do the survey on board. Results would be very interesting.

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DirtyDan October 27, 2015

You don't need a survey to reach this conclusion. Just look any Y cabin; the airlines are selling people the product those people are willing to pay for. Capitalism at its finest.

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Open Jaw October 27, 2015

I always focus on price first when purchasing plane tickets. Then I will check perks of each airline when the price is about the same. Of course, the destination is a very big part of the equation. I will never purchase a first class ticket from JFK to BOS but I will do so if I'm heading to PDX or LAX. I recently have been flying B6 a lot more due to their low fare deals. I have visited 10 cities in the last year or so without spending more than $130 for a roundtrip ticket. Most flights cost me about only $100. I fly out on the first flight in the morning and return on the last flight of the day. I never need a hotel or luggage and can visit the city's major sites during my 8 to 10 hour trip.