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Hotels Keep Customers Happy Despite Cuts in Staff and Service -- Market Metrix
Announces First Quarter 2009 Hospitality Index Results
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SAN RAFAEL, Calif. – June 9, 2009 – Customer satisfaction with hotels remained strong (unchanged at 82.9) but airlines (-1.9 to 75.8) and rental car (-0.3 to 79.0) scores declined in the first quarter of 2009. Mandarin Oriental Hotels, JetBlue Airlines, and Enterprise Rent-a-Car ranked number one in hotel, airline, and rental car industry customer satisfaction, respectively.

Comparing performance across the hospitality industry

Hotels are facing a difficult time as consumers and businesses tighten spending on vacations and scale back on conventions and business travel. Despite the escalating recession, the industry has been able to protect the guest experience – customer satisfaction remains steady at near record level scores. However, the results for individual hotel companies are mixed. Unlike previous recessions, the luxury chains have been hit hard this time – here prices as well as quality of service have been cut. This is problematic, because the success of the luxury hotel is a function of great service and reasonably high margins. By contrast, value for money has remained strong for the budget hotels, in part because both prices and service were low to begin with.

The car rental industry continues to face a difficult operating environment with fewer people renting cars and rising costs (e.g. higher vehicle maintenance and repair costs). As a result, reductions in staff and operational cutbacks have resulted in diminishing levels of customer satisfaction. Hertz (+.8 to 80.1) and Thrifty (+.5 to 79.9) showed the biggest improvements in customer satisfaction scores while Alamo (-3.5 to 77) and Budget (-2.2 to 77.3) showed the biggest declines. Enterprise continues their industry dominance with overall satisfaction and loyalty scores well above competitors.

Passenger satisfaction with airlines declined (-1.9 to 75.8) compared to the fourth quarter of 2008. High volatility in fuel prices, indifferent service, labor problems, congested airports, and financial challenges continue to weigh heavily on the industry. Airlines remain the lowest scoring industry in this study. JetBlue retained the top spot with improved scores while AirTran posted the biggest decline (-1.1 to 76.0). Frontier Airlines continues its ascent with improved scores (+3.5 to 82) landing the brand in second place and edging closer to the top spot.

Top Scoring Hotel Brands

The top score among all hotel brands for Q1 2009 was Mandarin Oriental – a portfolio of deluxe and first class hotels, resorts, and residences in 25 countries. Guests rave about their “inspiring” experience, the “exquisite facilities”, the staff’s “legendary service” and even the “great value”. Kimpton Hotels posted a big gain (+4.9 to 94.7) and won the Upper Upscale category. The first quarter results also included two first time winners: The Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino (+2.8 to 88.1) won the Casino segment and WorldMark by Wyndham (formerly Trendwest Resorts) increased .5 to 91.5 which earned them top honors in the Timeshare Accommodations category.
 


Market Metrix Hospitality Index
Q1 2009 Winners

Winner
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Segment
Hotels . .
Mandarin Oriental 96.2 Luxury
Kimpton Hotels 94.7 Upper Upscale
Staybridge 90.9 Upscale
Holiday Inn Select 82.3 Midscale w/ F&B
Drury Inns 91.9 Midscale w/o F&B
Microtel Inns & Suites 84.8 Economy
Casinos . .
Wynn Las Vegas 93.2 Upscale casino
Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino 88.1 Casino
Web Sites . .
Le Meridian 88.5 Hotel Brand Web Site
Hotwire.com 79.1 Hotel Travel Web Site
Airline . .
Jet Blue 83.2 Airline
Car Rental . .
Enterprise 82.2 Car Rental
Timeshare . .
Worldmark by Wyndham 91.5 Timeshare Accommodations
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About MMHI
Based on 35,000 customer interviews conducted each quarter, the Market Metrix Hospitality Index™ (MMHI) is the largest and most in-depth measure of hospitality company performance available today. These benchmarks, delivered through our flagship product Customer Metrix™, enable Market Metrix clients to compare their results to competitors by STAR segment, AAA classification, Brand, SMSA, industry averages, performers in the top 10%, and other classifications. The MMHI is also available by subscription.

About Market Metrix 
Market Metrix is helping hospitality companies around the world succeed in the tough economy. With guest feedback collected 24/7/365, and built-in service recovery and investment decision support tools, we help clients save money and reduce risk of client defections. Based on award-winning research and breakthrough concepts, our SaaS-based products deliver instant survey results, analysis, and management tools for increasing revenue and reducing staff turnover. Our benchmarking database, MMHI, is the most comprehensive, independent comparison of consumer brand satisfaction in the industry. Our annual MMHI Awards are coveted by lodging and travel enterprises around the world. With clients that include more than 120 brands across 70 countries, Market Metrix has been helping leading hospitality companies turn feedback into performance since 1996. For more information, visit www.marketmetrix.com.

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Contact:

Mike Pharis
1-800-239-7515

 

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Also See: The Economic Tailspin Flattens Hotel Satisfaction in Q4 with Cuts in Staff and Services - Luxury Hotels Still Shine; Casinos and Timeshares Decline / February 2009
Despite the Economy, Hotel Customer Satisfaction Improves in First Half of 2008, Reaching 5-year High 75% of Airlines Decline in Customer Satisfaction / Market Metrix Announces Second Quarter 2008 Hospitality Index Results / August 2008
Shell Vacations Hospitality Selects Market Metrix for Customer and Employee Feedback Solutions; Vacation Ownership Developer Uses Intelligence to Yield Continuously Improving Satisfaction / August 2008
Market Metrix Launches Employee Metrix Express™, an Affordable Alternative to Capture Feedback and Create an Engaged Workforce / July 2008
Market Metrix Selected to Measure Feedback and Help Maintain Rosewood Hotels & Resorts Distinct Ultra-luxury Guest Experience / May 2008
Luxury Hotels Buck Recession: Prices and Customer Satisfaction Are Up, Well-heeled Guests Still Willing to Pay More / Market Metrix First Quarter 2008 Hospitality Index Results / May 2008
Rosewood Hotels and Sun Country Airlines Take First Place Away from Industry Leaders; Market Metrix Announces Third Quarter 2007 Hospitality Index Results / November 2007
Rosewood Hotels and Sun Country Airlines Take First Place Away from Industry Leaders; Market Metrix Announces Third Quarter 2007 Hospitality Index Results / November 2007
It's Not Just About Winning - Improved Customer Service Pays off for Casinos; Market Metrix Introduces Customer Metrix 3.0 for Casinos - Web-Based Customer Feedback for Global Gaming Industry / September 2007
Market Metrix Unleashes Employee Metrix™ 2.0 - Web-Based Product Line for Hospitality Industry; Employees are central to delivering a superior customer experience / August 2007
Airlines and Luxury Hotels Disappoint: Customers Want More Comfort and Pampering; Market Metrix Announces Second Quarter 2007 Hospitality Index Results / August 2007
Hotels, Airlines at Opposite Ends of Satisfaction Scale: Hotels Highest, Airlines Lowest in 4 Years; Market Metrix First Quarter 2007 Hospitality Index Results / May 2007
Market Metrix Announces 2006 Hospitality Index Results; Drury Inns, JetBlue Airlines and Enterprise Rent-A-Car Win First Place 2006 Awards / February 2007
Market Metrix Announces Third Quarter 2006 Hospitality Index Results; Drury Inns, JetBlue Airlines and Enterprise Rent-A-Car Win for Second Consecutive Quarter / November 2006
Market Metrix Announces Second Quarter 2006 Hospitality Index Results; Drury Inns Ranked Number 1 in Customer Satisfaction for the Hotel Industry / August 2006
Market Metrix Announces First Quarter 2006 Hospitality Index Results / Drury Inns Ranked Number 1 in Customer Satisfaction for the Hotel Industry / May 2006
Market Metrix Announces Fourth Quarter 2005 Hospitality Index Results; Kimpton Hotels Ranked Number One in Hotel Customer Satisfaction / February 2006
Market Metrix Announces Third Quarter 2005 Hospitality Index Results; W Hotels Ranked Number One in Hotel Customer Satisfaction / November 2005
Market Metrix Announces Second Quarter 2005 Hospitality Index Results; New measure of guest problems show that hotel staff have biggest impact on loyalty / August 2005
Market Metrix Announces First Quarter 2005 Hospitality Index Results; Customer Satisfaction with Hotels Drops for First Time Since 9-11, First-Ever Measure of Satisfaction With Vacation Clubs / May 2005
Market Metrix Announces Fourth Quarter 2004 Hospitality Index Results; Wingate Inns, Midwest Airlines and Enterprise Rent-A-Car Take Top Industry Categories / February 2005
Market Metrix Announces Third Quarter 2004 Hospitality Index Results; Four Seasons, Midwest Airlines and Enterprise Rent-A-Car Take Top Industry Categories / November 2004
Market Metrix Announces Second Quarter 2004 Hospitality Index Results Four Seasons, Jet Blue Airways and Enterprise Rent-A-Car Take Top Industry Categories / August 2004
Market Metrix Announces First Quarter 2004 Hospitality Index Results - Staybridge Suites, Jet Blue Airways and Enterprise Rent-A-Car Take Top Industry Categories / May 2004
Walt Disney World Resorts Ranks Number One in Hotel Customer Satisfaction; Market Metrix Fourth Quarter 2003 Hospitality Index Results / February 2004
Market Metrix Third Quarter 2003 Hospitality Index Results; First-Ever Measure of Satisfaction With Online Hotel Reservations Places Radisson and Yahoo! Travel on Top / November 2003
Market Metrix Second Quarter 2003 Hospitality Index Results -- Fairmont Hotels & Resorts Improves Satisfaction Score to Take Top Hotel Prize / Aug 2003
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