Pune: In a rare achievement, the Pune Airport has been ranked third in 5-15 million passengers per annum (mppa) category by Airport Council International (ACI). Airports Authority of India’s (AAI) persistent efforts in improving passenger facilities and offering world-class services have resulted in six of its airports being adjudged as amongst the best in the world.
The Airport Service Quality (ASQ) Awards are presented to those airports wherein the customers rate them the highest in the score chart for over a year. The categories have been designated to recognise the achievements of airports of different sizes and in different regions.
Ajay Kumar, Director, Pune Airport, said “We are working to make it number one in 5 to 15 million category. This year we will be crossing 8 million passengers’ mark and this is a record for handling such traffic in given number of bays and terminal building area.” He thanked all stakeholders i.e., passengers, Indian Air Force (IAF), airlines, CISF, immigration, customs, staffers of Airports Authority of India, taxi and auto operators and PMPML for bus services including the agencies working for the Pune Airport.
Angela Gittens, Director General-ACI World, said, “Objective measurement and benchmarking are critical in driving performance in any business especially in such a competitive and dynamic one as an
In this category, Hyderabad Airport became number one once again for the fourth time. The second spot is shared by Balikpapan Airport of Indonesia and Hohhot Baita International Airport of Inner Mongolia, China. Pune has shared the third spot with Cochin and Kolkata airports.
“It is heartening to note that Pune Airport has been ranked 3rd in the 5-15 million category of ASQ-ACI survey along with Kochi and Kolkata. The users and stakeholders of Pune need to be complimented for this improved ranking which is user-driven due to the continued passenger demand for a high level of service and facilities. While this ranking may surprise many passengers, credit must also be given to the airport operators for making efforts to improve the service quality at the airport. AAI and the other stakeholders at Pune Airport must make sustained efforts for actually translating these ratings into the overall satisfaction a passenger experiences while accessing the airport and going through check-in, security, airport facilities, use of washrooms, retail, food and beverage counters,” said Dhairyashil Vandekar, an aviation expert and analyst.
“Going by the phenomenal passenger growth being witnessed by Pune Airport and the fact that it is still not able to do justice to the actual potential and demand of the city indicates the number of improvements and the facilities that are still required to be created at this airport by AAI.
While the long-delayed expansion of terminal building is in progress, key areas like hassle-free access to airport, barrier-free environment for differently abled passengers, measures to reduce the carbon footprints, reduced time and ease of going through the airport processes, better employee engagements, quality dwell time need to be improved upon,” he added.
“The rating of Pune Airport in 2016 was 4.78 which has improved to 4.80 in the quarter ended December 2017. Ideally, there is a need for AAI to set a higher benchmark for excellence in ratings of 4.85 and above on a scale of 5 by AAI airports to ensure a higher quality of service at their airports. Interestingly, the increased ratings of this survey are also taken into consideration by the economic regulator while accepting the demand of the airport operators for increasing the airport tariffs,” Dhairyashil told Sakal Times.
Airport Service Quality Awards
ASQ is the only worldwide programme to survey passengers at the airport on their day of travel. It measures passengers’ views of 34 key performance indicators, including airport access, check-in, security screening, restrooms, stores, restaurants, additionally capturing passenger comments of their best and worst experience at the airport. Each airport uses the same methodology, creating an industry database that allows airports to compare themselves to other airports around the world. The ASQ programme also has a feature that facilities sharing of best practices among airport operators.