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Airport service quality drivers of passenger satisfaction

Vanja Bogicevic (Graduate Student and Graduate Assistant at the College of Hospitality and Technology Leadership, University of South Florida, Sarasota, Florida, USA)
Wan Yang (Assistant Professor at the College of Hospitality and Technology Leadership, University of South Florida, Sarasota, Florida, USA)
Anil Bilgihan (Assistant Professor at the College of Business, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida, USA)
Milos Bujisic (PhD and Graduate Associate at Rosen College of Hospitality Management, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida, USA)

Tourism Review

ISSN: 1660-5373

Article publication date: 28 October 2013




Considering the complexity of the airport industry service palette, it is important to identify which air travel factors are distractors and which factors are enhancers of passenger satisfaction. Building on Herzberg's two-factor motivation theory, this study aims to explore most frequently mentioned attributes of airport service quality and distinguish key drivers for passenger satisfaction/dissatisfaction in the airport context.


A content analysis of 1,095 traveler comments posted between 2010 and 2013 on an airport review web site was performed in order to identify satisfiers/dissatisfiers. The web spider randomly selected consumer comments related to 33 popular destinations.


The study results indicated key satisfiers in the airport context such as cleanliness and pleasant environment to spend time in. On the other side, security-check, confusing signage and poor dining offer are recognized as major dissatisfiers in the airport setting.

Practical implications

The study findings provide insight on predominant satisfiers, dissastisfiers and performance factors of airport service quality from passengers' perspectives. Airport management teams may use the study results to renovate airport facility and improve service quality.


To the best of the authors' knowledge, this study is the first to utilize the visual data mining techniques in examining airport users' experience. Visualization produced summaries of qualitative comments in the form of tag clouds, word networks, and word tree images that help discover the most emerging themes of travelers' complaints and compliments.



Received 2 September 2013. Revised 2 September 2013. Accepted 9 September 2013.


Bogicevic, V., Yang, W., Bilgihan, A. and Bujisic, M. (2013), "Airport service quality drivers of passenger satisfaction", Tourism Review, Vol. 68 No. 4, pp. 3-18.



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Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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