The impact of an aircraft's service environment on perceptions of in-flight food quality

Airlines are currently striving to improve the quality and quantity of in-flight food, because research has shown that catering is a key attribute for a customer's satisfaction with airline service quality. But the role of an airline's service environment in forming customer perceptions about food quality has not yet been properly investigated. Using electronic word-of-mouth data from N = 3996 airline passengers, this study deploys a linear regression model at multiple levels to relate perceived in-flight food quality with both the overall service environment and its formative components. The results clearly unveil the importance of an aircraft's service environment on perceived in-flight catering quality; perceptions of food quality are primarily influenced by the quality of cabin staff service, followed by entertainment and seat quality. Instead of continuing with the current practice of signing up top chefs to improve menus, airlines may instead consider putting their management focus on service improvements.


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  • Accession Number: 01600086
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Apr 1 2016 2:40PM