Published — Sunday 11 November 2012
Last update 11 November 2012 12:05 am
Abdulateef Al-Mulhim’s article about airports in the Kingdom, its staff and other related issues was superb. He selected an excellent subject which was really in need of the attention. He discussed a number of important points and identified areas where improvement is required. No doubt Saudi Arabian airports are among the best and beautiful airports in the world with all the facilities.
There was a time according to Al-Mulhim when all Saudi or foreign employees at the airports always had a smile on their faces. Passport control officers, customs, travel agents, government employees and the taxi drivers, they all had smile on their faces. There is no doubt about it that the airports are the first place a visitor, trader, tourist, diplomat and guest worker sees in a country he visits. The behavior of the personnel at the airport is very important for passengers particularly the new comers. It is very important to talk to newcomers in the most polite way. And workers at the airports must go an extra mile to help the newcomers to the airport. The kind and polite treatment will ease the passenger’s burden of the long hours of flight and hardships of the journey.
About the huge venture, he rightly said that billions of Saudi riyals have been spent and billions have been allocated for the airport upgrading. But these billions being spent or allocated must be matched by personal behavior and good training of the employees at these airports. It is also important to have bilingual employees for better communication with the passengers. Saudi Arabian Airlines (Saudia) is still the best I believe, but it would be nice and more advantageous to the passengers if they improve their services further and reconsider the baggage policy and allow passengers to carry one hand bag in addition to two pieces of baggage like before, as many passengers go to their home countries after spending a long period here.
I thank Abdullateef Al Mulhim for the nice article and extend my best wishes to the officials of the airport authority and Saudi Arabian Airlines. — Zakaria Sultan, Riyadh