Sat, Dec 18, 2010 - Page 2 News List

Airport chief vows to revamp image

‘TREE’ CHANGE:The president of the airport corporation said lighting a Christmas tree was part of a ‘revolutionary method’ to rescue the image of Taiwan’s main gateway

Staff Writer, with CNA

Staff dressed in Christmas costumes stand in front of a Christmas tree at the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport -yesterday as part of an event to change the image of Taiwan’s primary international airport.

PHOTO: CNA

The Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport Corp (TIA) pledged yesterday to implement an efficient management model and improve service quality during a lighting ceremony for a giant Christmas tree in Terminal 2.

In an effort to emerge from the shadows of a series of negative reports over the past year, the TIA’s executive team will adopt a “revolutionary method” to save its image, TIA president Samuel Lin (林鵬良) said.

In the latest evaluations by the Airports Council International, the airport ranked 41st in terms of service quality this year, a fall from 27th place last year.

“We are going to highlight cultural perspectives at the airport, introduce a new business model and practice organization consolidation,” Lin said.

The lighting of the Christmas tree is part of a TIA campaign to connect Taiwan to the world, Lin said.

“We want to celebrate the holiday season with every traveler, domestic or international,” Lin said.

“By sending out the message ‘it’s time to go home,’ we want people to know that we care,” he added.

Lin said the airport would also hold activities on Taiwanese holidays to introduce the country to foreign travelers.

In terms of the new business model, the airport will open lounges that sell the same meals as those served in business class so that people can enjoy a “luxury sky kitchen” on the ground, he said.

“The airport must create a -customer-friendly environment and respond to customer needs in a timely manner,” Lin said.

To improve service quality, Lin said a program that teaches staff to multitask is expected by next June so they can become familiar with the overall operation of the country’s main gateway and act quickly in case of an emergency.

The airport has drawn widespread criticism since June when a jetway collapsed at the airport’s Terminal 2.

In early July, staffers of the airport’s central control room were caught having a party while on duty that included alcohol. Repeated toilet leaks and power blackouts have only compounded the facility’s woes.

As a result, the airport, which had been run as a government agency since it opened in 1979, formally began corporate-style operations last month, a move aimed at enhancing the facility’s efficiency.

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