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Eco-friendly Flights?: A Consumer’s Perspective (Management Project)

Background:
The environmental impacts of tourism have recently become a high-profile topic due to the increasing amount of attention devoted to issues such as climate change. The harmful effects of aviation, in particular, have led airline companies to adopt proactive sustainability agendas. In light of this, this study seeks to explore the extent of environmental awareness amongst consumers as well as the effects that corporate sustainability measures have on the decision-making process of air travelers.

Purpose:
The purpose of this study is to determine whether or not consumers value environmental responsibility within the airline industry and to determine the factors that influence the consumer decision-making process.

Method:
This study utilizes a mixed-method approach, with both quantitative and qualitative methods employed. Quantitative data was collected through a survey distributed online and to travelers at Göteborg Landvetter airport, with a total of 95 respondents. Additionally, an in-depth interview was conducted with Stefan Gössling, a prominent researcher within the field of tourism.

Findings:
The results of this thesis reveal relatively low awareness amongst consumers with regard to the environmental actions of airlines. Although consumers appear to have a general knowledge of the negative impacts of air travel, they are reluctant to alter their own flying behavior. Additionally, the results of the survey reveal that consumers are not yet familiar with the concept of eco-friendly flights or the sustainable options that are available to them when purchasing flight tickets.  Ultimately, when buying from airline companies, consumers place greater emphasis on other factors such as costs, services and the availability of desired routes.
Source: Jönköping University
Authors: Budianschi, Corina | Ekeroth, Farrah Blair | Milanova, Marija

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