Entering the doors of an airport may be worrisome and timid especially if it’s a first time traveler particularly for a child. The first time experience would always trigger a memory in regard to the factors of sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch. That particular memory should be able to captivate the most remarkable experience that child has ever had in an airport, which should be a positive guest experience rather than a negative. That experience should be meaningful enough to provide he/she with the courage to become a future frequent flyer.
The future for airport guest experience appeals to modernity and contemporary, which should actively engage each of the physical senses to stimulate a positive everlasting guest experience. This guest experience is key to acquiring a strong market appeal, high profitability, and brand loyalty in order to become competitive and sustainable in the market. The top airport in the world recognized for their overall excellence among 100 airports is Singapore Changi Airport. This particular airport is a perfect example of providing an everlasting guest experience, which features appealing entertainment, architectural designs, and abundant convenient shops, amenities, and services (http://www.worldairportawards.com/Awards_2013/top100.htm).
The current features SFO has that classify itself as one of the top airports in the region in terms of guest experience are the aviation museum and library, contemporary architectural designs, Berman reflection room, Flight Deck, Kid’s Spot, and convenient shops, amenities, and services. In regard to recognition, SFO was recognized for the highest honor in annual concession awards in the food & beverages programs and the Environmental Achievement Award (www.flysfo.com).
Certainly SFO has the appeal of taste and sight of the physical senses through their complex architectural designs and delicious foods that strongly appeal to guests. In regard to sight, the airport is perfectly clean, organized, and maintained as it projects a professional appearance. It has recently renovated Terminal 3 to provide a “more enhance travel experience with natural lightening, uninterrupted views, and thoughtfully located retail and dinning” facilities, thus creating a “cohesive, relaxing space for passengers to enjoy.” Personally, I enjoyed Terminal 3 because of its contemporary appeal. In regard to taste, the airport has a variety of cultural restaurants that originate from local sources. Personally, I enjoyed Live Fire Pizza restaurant because of its delicious foods and beverages in addition to its contemporary presence. Their pizza was exceptionally fresh, and beverages were amazing (www.flysfo.com)
However, SFO lacks the stimulus senses of hearing, touch, and smell to further provide a dynamic experience. In regard to hearing, sounds are part of an everlasting experience, whether it is from a (20 feet) waterfall and/or pond in an airport similar to Changi Airport, in which I highly recommend SFO to replicate. In regard to improving sight, I recommend SFO to implement nature sceneries to represent their support for being environmentally friendly and green such as incorporating a butterfly garden, sunflower garden, palm tree garden, pool garden, and/or vertical garden similar to Changi. These are very appealing because they make people feel they are not in an ordinary airport, but make them feel like they are outdoors with nature with smell, touch, and sight. SFO has also implemented displacement ventilation, which will “further enhance passenger comfort by using natural updrafts.” This creates a “fresh-air feeling, more like being outdoors, but highly recommend SFO to implement real plants, and a small aquarium with sea creatures that represent the Bay Area, which will entertain guests (http://www.changiairport.com/at-changi/) In regard to touch, I do think that SFO did a good judgment on