What Business Travelers (and I) Want

Via Frank II at One Bag, One World, this study of business traveler preferences is pretty interesting.

The top five most used airline ancillary services (in order):
1. Securing an aisle row seat
2. Priority security line access and early boarding
3. Airline lounge or club access
4. Securing a seat near the front of the plane
5. Extra leg room in coach

I’m no longer a travel once a week business traveler, but I really wouldn’t have thought the same things. I’ve also never been a business traveler who consistently flew first class (I’ve never booked it and only relied on upgrades to get it). So my list would be:

  1. Extra leg room in coach
  2. Securing a seat near the front of the plane
  3. Securing an aisle row seat
  4. Early boarding

I would also highlight the ease of upgrades and ability to frequently accrue reward program points as non-ancillary services that I desire. In terms of leg room, I’m 6’3″ or 6’4″ depending on the weather and have some chronic knee problems. Leg room is far and away the most important thing for me, as it can determine whether I enjoy a flight or if I spend it in pain. I will almost always upgrade myself for an economy plus seat if it means added leg room.

This also stands out from the study:

According to those surveyed, the least-used ancillary services are priority standby for an alternative flight and internet access. The latter may seem most surprising, however, it alludes to the use of in-flight time as a ‘safe haven’ to stay disconnected and prepare or play catch up before plugging back in on arrival.

I totally agree here. Time on a plane is basically the only waking time in my life when I’m not online. Having a couple hours where I have to be unplugged is a welcome break. I’ve never used internet on a flight when it’s offered and do not welcome the growth of in-flight internet at all.


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