Research by: Shraddha Puri, Shweta Pandey, Siddhant Puri, & Sandeep Puri
This case describes unruly passenger behaviour on National Aviation Company of India Ltd.’s New York-Delhi flight. It elaborates on the airline crew’s failure to effectively address an elderly woman’s predicament and assuage her concerns after an inebriated passenger urinated on her. As a result, Air India was exposed to social media ridicule, public scorn, loss of customer loyalty and trust, and a severe dent in its brand image. With the plummeting net loss in 2022 and reputation damage threatening to come in the way of its goal of becoming the airline of choice in passenger service and comfort, what can Air India do to rebuild its brand image, revive its past glory, prevent or manage such instances, and reclaim customer loyalty and trust?
This case is appropriate for undergraduate or graduate courses, particularly those related to marketing or services marketing. It aligns well with modules focusing on customer experience management, customer relationship management (CRM), crisis strategies, and service recovery. This case has been used in a CRM course to facilitate discussions on customer satisfaction, customer retention, loyalty, and brand-rebuilding strategies after a crisis. After working through the case and assignment questions, students will be able to do the following:
- Define the role of customer service and the customer experience in the airline industry.
- Explain the importance of CRM in the aviation sector.
- Identify various ways of avoiding the recurrence of service disasters, especially those related to intoxicated passengers in the airline industry.
- Explore process of rebuilding a brand after a reputation crisis.
To cite this case: Puri, S., Pandey, S., Puri, S., & Puri, S. (2023). Air India: The Image Damage of “Pee-Gate. Ivey ID: W33710. London, Canada: Ivey Publishing.