You Get What You Pay For

We’ve all heard the saying ‘you get what you pay for’. This is especially true in budget businesses such as discount retail stores, accommodation, air travel – you name it.


In October 2010, I returned from a trip to Japan in complete awe of how fantastic their customer service is (you can read the blog article about it here). So you can only imagine the initial shock I felt when I read an article slamming a Japanese airline for their poor service and careless attitude towards handling complaints. It just didn’t seem right for Japan. Sure, maybe America but not Japan!

To summarise the article, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government filed a complaint against Japanese budget carrier Skymark Airlines after it posted notices informing customers it would not be accepting complaints during flights. Even more shockingly, Skymark’s ‘service concept’ stated that cabin staff “would not help passengers stow their bags and that attendants were not required to use ‘polite language’ when talking to customers.”

My astonishment was almost immediately washed away when I read that this was a budget airline. When you sacrifice price, everything else goes out the window. Lower fares meant less staff who received less training and less pay. As a result, they couldn’t afford to care about anything more than the bare minimum. Put simply, if you want to pay less you can’t expect the best service.

Cheaper rates might see more first time customers through the door, but the cheap service won’t see them return a second time. Outstanding customer service and attention to detail is what brings people back for more and at Messages On Hold, it’s what turns first time clients into long term, loyal customers.

– Kym Illman