Special thanks to Frank Mullen's column that highlighted the Quad City International Airport's "2012 Airport of the Year" designation awarded by the Illinois Division of Aeronautics.|
While Mr. Mullen's tongue-in-cheek approach to humorous writing is noted, I couldn't help but wonder what kind of impression such self-effacing musings may leave on the newcomer to the Quad-Cities.
What kind of impression might he/she be left with about our airport, and our community?
More importantly, would they really think we have harvest gold colored soap out here? (It's more of clear foam, mind you, and it is "hands free!")
All joking aside, we consistently hear comments from our patrons on the order of, "I realized once I traveled through here -- then I saw what other airports looked like, how clean our airport is!"
Our most complimented item, based on the countless comment cards stacked on the marketing department shelves, is about our customer care service team.
These are the men and women who are skycaps, meeting you at the curb to bring you a wheelchair, or who drive you down our concourses in an electric golf cart. (Note: Plaque on order for "Electric Cart of the Year.")
Isn't it comforting to know that your elderly loved one is receiving personal assistance, from the curb to the gate, at the Quad City International Airport? We think so, based on the stack of Thank You cards.
And yes, the word "International" in our name is a stretch for most leisure travelers who can't get a direct flight to Cancun, yet. However, such a designation is completely accurate due to our "US Customs Port of Entry" (located adjacent to the terminal building) which allows a global corporation headquartered here to land and clear customs from overseas.
While commercially, one can't fly nonstop to an international connection yet, travelers are just one connection away from international flights via Chicago, Detroit, Atlanta, Denver, and Dallas-Ft. Worth.
And when I say "yet," we are working on non-stop international charter flights to amazing destinations.
But, back to the perks we enjoy now. Round-trip airfares are lower, on average, than airfares from Peoria, Cedar Rapids and Des Moines. And, with close parking, free Wi-Fi, and a hassle free travel experience, we are proud to promote the airport as just plain "Easier."
Thanks for flying with us. We hope you enjoy knowing that we really have earned our awards (plural) and are proud to share them with you, our patrons, who make this airport the success that it is.
So, now I am off to grab a muffin at the Air Host restaurant, esteemed winner of the Illinois Department of Aeronautics 2011 "5 Prop Award" for best airport food and hospitality.
We encourage your readers using the airport during the holidays to experience our perks for themselves.
Bruce Carter, A.A.E., is direct of aviation at the Quad City International Airport in Moline.