|Orbitz Ranks Among Top 10 in Online Experience by Independent Customer Respect Study|
Study Validates Cendant Brand's Focus on Customer Care
CHICAGO – August 15, 2005 – Orbitz, the faster, easier way to find the trip you want, today announced that it was ranked – for the third year in a row – a Top 10 online travel Web site for customer experience in a recently released Third Quarter 2005 Online Customer Respect Study . The study of the largest airline and travel firms was conducted by The Customer Respect Group (www.customerrespect.com), an international research and consulting firm that focuses on how companies treat their customers online.
The independent study, in its fourth year, is the only one of its kind to apply objective measures to the analysis of corporate performance from an online customer's perspective. The study assigns a Customer Respect Index (CRI™) on a scale of 0 – 10 to each of the more than 40 airline and travel Web sites surveyed. The Customer Respect Index is a qualitative and quantitative in-depth analysis and independent measure of a customer's online experience when interacting with companies via the Internet.
According to the Customer Respect Group's analysis, their results were derived by the following methodology:
By interviewing a representative sample of the adult Internet population, and by analyzing and categorizing more than 2000 corporate Web sites across a spectrum of industries in detail, The Customer Respect Group has determined the attributes that combine to create the entire online customer experience. These attributes have been grouped together and measured as indicators of Simplicity (ease of navigation), Responsiveness (quick and helpful responses to inquiries), Privacy (respect for the privacy of a customers), Attitude (customer-focus of site), Transparency (open and honest policies) and Principles (values and respects customer data). Combined, they measure a company's overall Customer Respect.
Each category is given a rating of 1-10 and then analyzed corporate Web sites are graded by a combined average score.
Based upon the group's methodology, Orbitz received a score of 8.0 out of 10.0, higher than the average 7.2 among all the travel companies surveyed. In addition to the numerical accolades, the score also earned the site an "Excellent" rating from the Customer Respect Group. This is the third consecutive year that the Customer Respect Group ranked Orbitz within the Top 10 online Web sites.
"Whether traveling for business or leisure, our customers demand speed, efficiency and convenience," said Eliah Kahn, Orbitz senior vice president of Customer Experience. "At Orbitz, we strive to offer the very best customer experience. From our personalized Care Alerts and industry-leading email response times to 24/7 expert travel advice, we work to ensure we are meeting our customers' every need."
"The most pressing customer concerns prevalent in online travel include the lack of consistent quality and speed in customer interactivity and privacy issues," said Terry Golesworthy, president of The Customer Respect Group. "In taking the lead to address these issues with innovations such as the Care Alert system and one of the quickest email response times, Orbitz once again proves why it belongs in this elite group of Web sites providing top customer service."
Orbitz cares for its customers by reaching out to them in multiple ways before their journey even begins. A few examples of how Orbitz provides one of the best travel experiences and delivers a high level of customer service:
- 7 of 10 customers give Orbitz their cell phone numbers. By signing up for a Care Alert, Orbitz customers who book a flight receive critical information to help them stay informed and make smarter travel plans. The Orbitz Care Team consists of air traffic analysts and specialists in airport and airline operations.
- In the event of a hurricane, Orbitz takes proactive measures to minimize the impact the storm has on a customers' travel plans, such as: waiving the Orbitz change fees for flights and hotels for travelers who need to change their plans to get out of the path of a hurricane, attempting to negotiate waiver of cancellation fees with travel partners including airlines and hotels, and providing on-site resources to help travelers easily locate and book hotels in their area.
- If a customer arrives at their hotel and the accommodations are unsatisfactory or do not meet the standards of the advertised star rating, Orbitz will work with the customer to attempt to rebook them at a hotel that they find satisfactory. (This information is taken into consideration by our hotel team to re-evaluate, and if necessary, change the star rating of the hotel).
More details on the Third Quarter 2005 Online Customer Respect Study can be found at www.customerrespect.com.
Orbitz is a leading online travel company that enables travelers to search for and purchase a broad array of travel products, including airline tickets, lodging, rental cars, cruises and vacation packages. Since launching its website www.orbitz.com to the general public in June 2001, Orbitz has become the third largest online travel site based on gross travel bookings. On Orbitz, consumers can search more than 455 airlines, tens of thousands of lodging properties worldwide and 16 car rental companies. Orbitz was acquired by Cendant's Travel Distribution Services division in November 2004 and is part of the Consumer Travel Americas group.
|"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding Orbitz Worldwide Inc.'s business which are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report or Form 10-K for the most recently ended fiscal year.|