Swedes slam service at rail company SJ

Swedes slam service at rail company SJ
Passengers on Sweden’s national railway SJ have derided the company for poor service and punctuality, slapping SJ with one of the worst scores in the transit industry in a recent survey.

This year, SJ received a score of only 55.6 out of 100 in an annual customer satisfaction survey of the transportation industry from Svenskt Kvalitetsindex (SKI).

The survey included questions about air, rail, and road transit, including taxis and buses.

SJ’s score dropped eight points from the 63.1 it received last year.

“It’ obviously a very disappointing result for us, and this is a study we take very sersiously,” SJ spokesperson Dag Rosander said of the company’s low score to the TT news agency.

He added that he was “somewhat surprised” by the result since SJ’s punctuality has actually improved and the company’s own customer surveys indicate an upward trend.

The score for the railway industry as a whole also dropped below 60, which is “a strong signal that customers are really dissatisfied”, according to SKI.

Of the roughly fifty industries reviewed by SKI every year, a score below 60 is highly unusual, added SKI.

Scandinavian airline SAS, which showed a marked improvement last year by rising four points to 64.5 percent, dropped back down to 61.2 in the 2009 survey, close to previous levels.

Skyways also received a weak mark of 60.9.

Among airlines, Malmö Aviation and Sverigeflyg, which includes the Gotlandsflyg, Sundsvallsflyg and Kalmarflyg carriers, received the highest customer ratings of 70.2 and 69.4, respectively.

Swedish bus companies have also had a hard time keeping riders happy, according to the survey.

Swebus Express fell from a score of 70.2 last year to 63.7 this year. Among “other bus companies”, which includes commuter bus lines, customer satisfaction dropped from 73.9 to 65.

The only transport industry sector to show an increase in customer satisfaction is travel by taxi, which crept up from 68.8 last year to 71.3 in 2009.

SKI has been carrying out regular customer satisfaction and quality development surveys since 1989 in around 50 different industries.

The most recent review of the transit industry is based on responses to 3,100 interviews carried out between October 27th and November 4th.

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