Airline gets creative to improve customer experience

When airline customers think about flying they often focus on flight schedules and possible delays, damaged or lost luggage, and making connections. Its not exactly a happy place for their minds to be. Now, one airline gets creative and is making changes to move beyond that.

Delta air lines, the one that not long ago added Seattle Best Coffee, will make Apple iPads available to rent on flights from Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) when the airline upgrades its Concourse G terminal at the airport beginning in January 2012. Using “virtual newsstands” at “Media Bars” throughout the terminal, customers will be able to download their choice of content, including publications, movies, music and apps. Once customers reach their destination, a prepaid postage box they got at the time of rental will be used to return the iPad.

Pretty cool idea really but what else?

“As part of our plan to invest in improving the customer experience both in the air and on the ground, Delta is excited to showcase some of Minnesota’s finest chefs and foods to passengers from around the globe while providing our customers with superior amenities,” said Delta’s Bill Lentsch, senior VP, Minnesota Operations.

At MSP, Delta will also rework its current offerings with 12 new local chef-driven restaurants and fresh markets including

  • Mill City Tavern, a reflection of the wealth of Midwestern farms and artisan purveyors with fresh, local ingredients.
  • Mimosa will feature the flavors and textures of simple French country cooking.
  • Minnesota Beer Hall, a festive gathering place to relax prior to flight.
  • Minni Bar, an easygoing cafe offering a menu of globally inspired sandwiches.
  • Twinburger, a famous South Minneapolis cheeseburger that features cheese inside the meat patty rather than on top.
  • Shoyu, a modern Japanese menu that celebrates fresh ingredients where noodles and dumpling wrappers will be made fresh daily in a glass structure that juts out onto the terminal, engaging travelers.
  • Vero, features thin-crust, artisan-style pizzas.
  • Volante, a modern Italian restaurant renowned for being able to take three seasonal ingredients and create a true Italian experience.

“We’re confident that the unique concepts will reinforce our commitment to the Twin Cities and maintain the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport’s status as one of the best in the country” added Lentsch.

Sure, it’s not a guarantee flights will be on time or luggage will make it with you to your destination but who doesn’t like a good gourmet meal at the airport?

Flickr photo by jhritz

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