Principles of customer service

AC 1.1 - Principles of customer service

Responding to feedback

Modern communication methods and social media have made it much easier for customers to review the experience they had from a tourism organisation.

There are two ways that tourism organisations can obtain information about their customers’ experience.  They can ask customers what they thought about the organisation, or they can look at review sites such as Trip Advisor.

What’s important is that tourism organisations do something about negative comments or feedback so future customers are not put off.  Also, they can use positive feedback to promote the organisation or reward their staff.

Complete the activities below.

Activity 1

The review in the box below is real and was taken from reviews of a hotel in London.

Read through the review and suggest ways in which the owners of the hotel could respond to the negative feedback.

I never write reviews but want to save anyone from staying here! You can't beat the location and with a bit of upkeep this property could be fantastic....BUT...... It is appalling! The superior family apartment with patio is not fit for purpose and in my view should not be used for guests.

When I got to the room (top floor with no one there to offer the 'help' with bags their website promised) the room was made up but not clean. When I tried to call the manager, I discovered the phone did not work. (Also, advertised as an 'amenity' on the website). So, I went down 3 flights of stairs again and knocked on her door. She pretended to not understand me but did tell me that the phones would be fixed on Monday (this was Saturday). Of course, Monday rolled around and no one fixed the phones. The phones were out the entire week I was there. The internet service was marginal at best and a good part of the time I had not internet at all, and when I did the service was painfully slow. The couple in the room across from mine were livid because the husband needed the internet to work. They checked out after one day. I would have left but I was ill in London and didn't have the energy or strength to find a new hotel. Several other guests I spoke to also left early. I met them as I wandered around the hotel with my computer desperately trying to get online.

When I complained, I was literally screamed at and told that I was a troublemaker who was just trying to get a free holiday! A man named David who I spoke to on the phone asked me why I was so difficult and accused me of being a racist because I complained that the woman at the hotel site (who, let me add, was hardly ever there) didn't speak English well enough to communicate effectively. He told me that I was breaking the law - that racism was against the law in England! Unbelievable.

Again, I only remained there all week because I was traveling alone and too ill to find another hotel.

Do yourself a favour - steer clear of this hotel.

Activity 2

Look at the Trip Advisor website and see if you can find examples of reviews where customers state that customer service is better than it was the last time they visited.