Future is personal in air travel: Iata

Air travel to get more personal with technology (File)

The ‘connected passenger’ has become a reality, with 97 per cent of airline passengers carrying at least one personal electronic device.

But global usage rates indicate passengers have been slow to adopt new airline and airport mobile services when travelling.

Deeper analysis, however, shows that some industry players are bucking the trend and achieving high levels of usage. This is according to ‘The Future is Personal’, the latest industry report from Sita, an IT provider to the air transport industry.

Their research shows airlines have made significant investments in mobile services over the past four years as smartphone adoption surged and the majority now enable passengers to buy tickets, check-in and access flight information via smartphone apps. Meanwhile, half of the worlds’ airports also provide flight information via apps.

Still global rollout and adoption is proving to be slower and more complex than was anticipated. Half of passengers are keen to use their mobiles to find their way around the airport, access lounges or the aircraft, provide identification at checkpoints, or make payments.

The reality is though, that despite these and other services, including mobile check-in and boarding passes provided by airlines, 24 per cent of passengers have not yet used travel apps at all on their journey.

Nigel Pickford, Director Market Insight, Sita said: “At a glance, airlines and airports might be discouraged by the slower than expected global usage rates but this hides the huge success that some airlines and airports are experiencing.

Our analysis has shown that the successful ’outliers’, be they airports or airlines, are focusing on providing excellent customer service experiences that their passengers want. They are harnessing new technologies to give personalised services at the right moment of the journey.”

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