MIAMI – Seoul-Incheon International Airport (ICN) earns Airport Customer Experience Accreditation level four, the first to reach this new level.

The scheme was launched by ACI in 2019 and, since then, 45 airports worldwide joined the program to improve their customer experience management, particularly when confronted with the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and the preparation for an expected travel resumption.

As explained by ACI (Airport Council International) press release on March 31, Airport Customer Experience Accreditation is a worldwide recognized structured system that allows airports to highly improve their customer experience at the airport and deliver a better service.

ACI has entered a long-term partnership with Amadeus, a major GDS (Global Distribution System) operator, to deliver a world-renowned Airport Service Quality (ASQ) award as well as the accreditation program.

ICN Airport, with an already well-established reputation in customer expectation management, had already reached level three of the program when it entered the pilot phase of level four and participated in its development. level four accreditation requires site verifications which, because of Covid-19 restrictions, were conducted virtually.

Seoul-Incheon Airport – Photo: Incheon Airport via facebook

Comments by CEOs

“As the aviation industry continues to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic and prepares to support a sustained recovery, meeting the changing needs and expectations of customers will be ever more important and we congratulate Incheon on being the first airport in the world to achieve this level of accreditation”, commented Luis Felipe de Oliveira , ACI World Director General.

Mr. Kyung Wook KIM, Incheon Airport President & CEO, followed by saying “We are proud to be recognized as the first Level 4 accredited airport in the world, and it is our honor to participate and contribute to the development of the Level 4 – Airport Customer Experience Accreditation program.”

ACI specified that airports are eligible to the program as part of the ACI Airport Service Quality but to qualify they have to “subscribe to at least one of the ASQ departure program products”. Accreditation has a validity of 12 months renewable every year before the expiration date.

ACI, founded in 1991, is a trade association of world airports with the aim of fostering cooperation among its members. It works in partnership with ICAO, IATA, and the Civil Air Navigation Services Organization representing airports’ interests and participating in a safe, ecologically sustainable, and secure global air transport system centered on customers.

As of January 2021 ACI counted 701 members managing 1933 airports across 183 countries.

Featured image: Seoul-Incheon Airport – Photo: Incheon Airport via Facebook