1 In 4 Passengers Don’t Think Airlines Are Doing Enough For The Environment

Today, Inmarsat has launched its Passenger Confidence Tracker, a survey of almost 10,000 fliers that brings together insight into how people are feeling about travel in the post-COVID age. Conducted in partnership with Yonder, it’s the largest and most significant piece of research of its type. One of the areas researched was the sustainability of flying; the responses proved that this is still high on the minds of passengers, and indeed more than half would choose an airline based on its sustainability efforts.

Passenger Confidence Tracker
A quarter of passengers don’t think airlines are doing enough. Photo: Inmarsat

The Passenger Confidence Tracker has launched

Aviation connectivity leader Inmarsat has today revealed the results of its Passenger Confidence Tracker. This survey is the biggest one of its type since the start of COVID, reaching almost 10,000 members of the flying public from all over the world. Developed in collaboration with Yonder, the depth and breadth of the survey has presented an unrivaled insight into what passengers are thinking right now.

The level of information within the tracker is a goldmine for airlines, particularly during this period of rebuilding. Topics covered include when passengers would feel ready to fly again, what concerns them most, and how their travel will change in the future.

President of Inmarsat Aviation Philip Balaam noted the importance of the survey, saying,

“Understanding these opinions is critical for airlines. Until the industry understands passenger confidence, flyers won’t be returning to the skies en masse. One of the key take outs from this comprehensive survey is that eight in ten air passengers say their travel habits will change forever because of COVID-19.

“This is something the industry clearly needs to address. But it is also an opportunity.”

Passenger Confidence Tracker
The survey reached almost 10,000 regular fliers from all corners of the globe. Image: Inmarsat

Despite all the challenges and concerns presented by COVID, many passengers are still mindful of the impact their travel has on the planet. Let’s take a deeper look at some of the feedback the survey got on sustainability, and how people are feeling right now.

Passenger Confidence Tracker
Image: Inmarsat

You can download the full report free of charge from Inmarsat’s website here, or tune in to FlightPlan: Strategies for recovery at 14:55 today where I’ll take a deep dive into the data with Inmarsat’s SVP Inflight Business, Neils Steenstrup.

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Sustainability still on the mind of passengers

Despite all the changes that COVID has brought, it was clear from the Passenger Confidence Tracker’s results that sustainability is still very much on the mind of the flier. Overall, more than a third of passengers said they were thinking more about sustainability now, and the same number said that the impact of flying on the environment worried them.

Passenger Confidence Tracker
Image: Inmarsat

Regardless of the efforts taken by airlines to reduce their carbon footprint, over a quarter of respondents (27%) said they still don’t think airlines are doing enough. More than a quarter said they plan to take fewer flights in the future to limit their own carbon footprint. Just 18% responded with apathy to the sustainability issue.

Passenger Confidence Tracker
Image: Inmarsat

While there was strong support for a more sustainable aviation industry across the board, the push was notably higher from the younger generations. Those aged from 18 – 44 were more likely to strongly support the statements on sustainable travel, while in the over 45s, more respondents were indifferent about the matter.

Almost half think sustainability is more important post-COVID

Crucially for airlines, almost half of passengers (42%) consider sustainability an important factor when it comes to choosing who to fly with post-COVID-19. It was up there with cabin cleanliness (68%) and ticket price (47%) as well as the reputation of the airline itself (44%).

Passenger Confidence Tracker
Image: Inmarsat

It was interesting also to see how this response varied across different nationalities. Often, sustainability gets labeled as a ‘nice to have’, something that is the privilege of the developed world. However, as the survey showed, it is high on the minds of those in developing nations too.

Passenger Confidence Tracker
Image: Inmarsat

India and Brazil, in particular, voted very strongly for sustainability to be even more important in the pandemic recovery phase, with the support of 64% and 54% respectively. Conversely, those of us in the west tended to be less positive, with just 30% of UK respondents saying sustainability would be increasingly important when choosing an airline.

There’s so much more to the Passenger Confidence Tracker, so be sure to take a dive into it yourself. You can download the full report free of charge from Inmarsat’s website here, or tune in to FlightPlan: Strategies for recovery at 14:55 today where I’ll take a deep dive into the data with Inmarsat’s SVP Inflight Business, Neils Steenstrup.

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