Tiger Airways bounces back in Australia
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Tiger Airways bounces back in Australia

Tiger Airways Australia will restart its Melbourne to Brisbane leg tomorrow (Thursday) just days after it was allowed back in the skies.

A week ago the Melbourne to Sydney route was restored with three daily flights resuming.

Despite fears Tiger would have to fight to regain consumer confidence their flights have so far been reasonably full.

From the ABC:

Mr Davis says ticket sales are going well since CASA lifted its suspension on Wednesday, and this evening’s Melbourne to Sydney flight is almost full.

“The flights are selling very well. We’ve sold over 1,500 seats just yesterday. We are only operating three flights as you can see so 1,500 seats in a day is a pretty good sales record,” he said.

Mr Davis is the airline’s new chief executive. While the stats seem good some interviewed after the airline began flying hadn’t even been aware there had been a problem.

There has also been some discussion in the press of what leads people to book flights and perhaps Tiger’s safety record isn’t really a matter of concern.

Again from abc.net.au:

Geoff Thomas, aviation editor of West Australian Newspapers, says he thinks passengers still have confidence in Tiger because of the high standards of the aviation regulator.

“CASA, our regulator, is the toughest in the world and they oversee the world’s best safety record for jet transports so when they pull an airline certificate it is a very serious thing, but at the same time when they reinstate it, I think the public can be absolutely assured the airline is safe to fly,” he said.

Mr Thomas says surveys show most passengers care more about price than they do about safety.

“Most passengers make their choices on price, about 52 per cent and then about 50 per cent make the choice on frequency of service and only about 29 per cent actually make the choice on safety as their first consideration,” he said.

“So I think if the price is right and our regulator says yes they are safe to fly, I don’t think they’ll have any problem at all attracting people back.”

This article from The Australian in February 2011 contains more details on Australians choosing airlines over cost rather than reputation:

Reflecting just how price-conscious Australians are becoming, 60 per cent of travellers selected cost as the main influencer when choosing an airline.

Geoff Thomas, aviation editor of West Australian Newspapers, says he thinks passengers still have confidence in Tiger because of the high standards of the aviation regulator.

Other factors such as the airline’s reputation, meals and in-flight entertainment were voted as much less important, according to a survey of 800 Australians by travel website Travel.com.au.