Zit Seng's Blog

A Singaporean's technology and lifestyle blog

Customer Waiting Lounges For Car Owners

RikeCool Customer Lounge
RikeCool Customer Lounge

Car owners nowadays get quite well taken care of by various automotive service providers. Pictured here is the RikeCool customer waiting lounge. It’s a small room, but clean, neat, comfortable and cozy. There is a flat screen TV to keep car owners entertained. Too bad the mini fridge was empty, and the air-conditioning wasn’t quite strong enough for me. It’s quite different from, say, a decade ago when car owners are simply expected to take care of themselves while they waited for whatever it is they sent in their cars for.

Other companies are making similar efforts to please car owners. I find the situation at Borneo Motors quite hilarious actually. They have an automatic drink dispenser that can make you coffee, cappuccino, mocha, etc. Very convenient. But they add a “human touch” by stationing a staff to “manage” the automatic dispenser. I went to the dispenser expecting to help myself, but the staff insisted on making the drink for me, asked me to return to my seat, and brought me my drink. When I was done, I was quite happy to walk over to the bin to dispose of the cup. But no way, that staff insisted on disposing the cup for me.

It reminds me when I was in Manila many many years ago. At my hotel, the security guard would open the door for me when I wanted to leave (or enter) the hotel. That’s nice. Except that it was weird, because the door was an automatic sliding door. What the security guard did was to simply stand in front  of the door, so that the door sensor would activate and open the door, then step aside so that I can pass through. Hmm, hotel was afraid that its guests are allergic to the sensors?

In the past, sending your car for servicing was a dreadful affair. It takes too long. You leave your car at the service centre, then figure out how to go about the rest of your day. You’ve got to figure your way back at the end of the day (or even the next day) to pick up your car. Nowadays, we have 1 hr “express” service, and a nice comfortable customer lounge. They may even provide courtesy shuttle service out to a MRT station or somewhere convenient to catch other transport.

Some customer lounges are even designed so that you can watch while your car is being worked on. Your car in a hot humid workshop area, but you’re in a nice comfortable air-conditioned area separated by expansive glass windows.

No wonder car maintenance is all getting so expensive.

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