While the airlines may not be making money on food service, airport restaurants are: According to a survey conducted by GO Airport Express, a Chicago-based ground transportation provider, just 2% of travelers say they purchase food on the plane.
The company, which provides airport shuttles to and from O’Hare International Airport and Midway Airport, polled travelers nationwide; more than 400 people responded.
The number one response to the question on dining preferences when traveling, 55 percent of participants said they eat after going through security. Twenty six percent reported they don’t spend any money on food while going from point A to B; they eat before they leave or after they arrive at their destination. Eight percent responded that they bring their own food; four percent said they eat before they go through security and another four percent purchase food to eat while on the plane. Several others commented that time and circumstances dictate where and when they eat while traveling.
“Travelers are spending their spare time by taking advantage of the dining establishments offered post-security,” says John McCarthy, president, GO Airport Express. “Airports might benefit by increasing the number and types of restaurants to accommodate the many tastes and budgets of its flying customers.”
GO Airport Express, one of the oldest companies in Chicago, traces its founding to 1853 and the Parmelee Transportation Company, which provided a carriage service between Chicago’s railroad stations and the downtown hotels. The GO Group LLC is the nation’s largest airport transportation provider, serving some 60 airports in North America, Mexico, the Caribbean and Europe and transporting more than 13 million passengers per year.