Washington DC -- Two days after Morocco World News (MWN) published an article summarizing the feelings of the Moroccan community in North America toward Royal Air Maroc (RAM), the CEO of Morocco’s national carrier made an appearance at the National Parliament to discuss his company’s performance.
Washington DC — Two days after Morocco World News (MWN) published an article summarizing the feelings of the Moroccan community in North America toward Royal Air Maroc (RAM), the CEO of Morocco’s national carrier made an appearance at the National Parliament to discuss his company’s performance.
Ironically, Mr. Driss Benhima complained about RAM’s unjust treatment at the hands of the government and claimed ignorance of the reasons behind the airlines bad reputation in the social media.
At one point I was called unpatriotic for criticizing the national airlines. The facts are RAM needs to address the just and reasonable demands of the Moroccan residing abroad and tackle the service and customers problems that have dogged its international reputation for several years now. The choice for Royal Air Maroc is clear; either continues in its denials of facts and stays on the path of public relations decline or faces the reality and makes the adjustment needed to redress the image of this once stellar company.
Moroccans are not inherently against their national airline. In fact, numerous Moroccans living overseas rather fly with RAM if the price is right and the service is decent. Back in the 1970’s and 80’s it was a joy to fly “La Royal”. Unfortunately, in the last 15 years the service worsened as the prices rocketed.
To understand and grasp the magnitude of RAM’s tarnished image, Mr. Benhima should browse readers’ comments on MWN and visit websites for airline and airport reviews like airlinequality.com.
Moroccans are not alone in their criticizing of RAM. Cliff Kinghorn from the USA wrote on airlinequality.com: “Avoid this airline at all cost! Worst flight I have ever taken. JFK to Casablanca – we had assigned seats for the 3rd row, and ended up in last row. My wife’s seat was broken and overhead lights didn’t work. After meal, people literally bussed their trays as staff were no where to be found. Flight attendants were inept and surly”.
According to Skytrax, in 2013 RAM was one of the 20 worst airlines according to passengers’s reviews (read more: here). Mr. Benhima does not need to hire a sociologist firm “to better understand this phenomenon and respond to it.” RAM executives should study and address costumers complains on the Web.
During his October 20 presentation to Morocco’s House of representatives- Committee of infrastructure-, RAM CEO complained about the “unfairness “of the tax system that adds a fiscal burden on his company. But he never mentioned the unfairness of RAM pricing system on the Moroccan tax payers who are owed more than 1.1 billion dirhams from past bail-outs.
RAM pretends to be a private company when dealing with the community’s demands then plays the public cards when asking for tax breaks. Mr. Benhima “considers as absurd making his company the only company subject to the obligation to pay VAT on its purchases of aircraft and spare parts, at the time where other countries exempt their companies from this tax”. But he will not undertake his responsibilities to the Moroccan public.
As long as RAM executives keep blaming the “uneducated and unsophisticated” Moroccan “migra” for their astronomical prices and bad costumer assistance, the company will keep its reputation for unfriendly staff and poor service.
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Morocco World News’ editorial policy
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