Poll: Most Flyers Observe Onboard Safety Procedures and Prefer Demos to Videos

By Jeremy Del Nero on 15 August 2013
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Frequent flyers say they pay attention to safety briefings on airplanes on a regular basis and, in general, DSC_0190practice safe flying, according to a survey conducted by Frequent Business Traveler.  Passengers also prefer having a flight attendant conduct the safety briefing versus watching a canned video and almost all keep their seatbelts fastened during a flight while in their seats.

Even though many frequent travelers have seen the briefings so often that they themselves could probably conduct the demo, a majority, 63.4%, still pays attention to them.

Indeed, air travel has never been safer and is one of the safest forms of transportation.  Few people realize that using an escalator bears far greater risk. However, statistics notwithstanding, safety will always be a significant concern among flyers and is an overriding priority for the airline industry.  Recent events such as the Asiana crash-landing in San Francisco and various Boeing Dreamliner malfunctions bring the subject to the forefront of our thoughts.

In July, Frequent Business Traveler asked its readers to indicate what they do to stay safe in the air.  The survey was conducted in conjunction with FlyerTalk, the world’s largest online travel community, and garnered over 1,342 responses from readers and members of the forum.

Specifically, readers were asked what their habits were concerning safety demonstrations and the most appealing medium of information distribution.  videoSixty-four percent of poll respondents said they typically watch the safety video or demonstration when they fly, although 60.8% indicated that they did so on their most recent flight.

In addition, 57.9% said that they were more likely to pay attention to a safety demo conducted by flight attendants rather than a video.  One FlyerTalk member, Himeno, said it depends on the airline: “The BA video is so boring, that the attendants demo is more likely to keep my attention.”  Only 32.4% of respondents said that they took the time to read the safety booklet found in the seatback pocket.  Another FlyerTalk member, K_getchell,  said that he only refers to the safety manual in the event that he hasn’t flown on that particular aircraft before.

The idea of a safety video is relatively new and, having been approved by the FAA in 1984, the first safety videos started to appear in the mid 1980s.  In theory, the video allows crew members to attend to other duties in preparation for departure but, with six out of ten passengers saying they would pay greater attention to briefings conducted by crew members, it may turn out that the videos are simply easier to ignore, something the current survey findings point out as well.

Click here to continue to Page 2Delta, Air New Zealand, Seatbelts, and the Nearest Exit

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