Technology 'bolstering satisfaction with air travel at every stage'

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Technology’s growing role in air travel is a trend that Travel Management Companies have had to get used to in the last few years, with a new report from SITA suggesting this is not about to change.

The IT company has published its 2017 Passenger IT Trends Survey, revealing that passengers generally rate their journeys highly, with an overall satisfaction rate of 8.2 out of ten - but that this is generally even higher when technologies such as mobile services and biometrics are made available to travellers.

For example, 37 per cent of travellers said they had used automated ID control on their last flight, with 57 per cent saying they would do so again for their next trip. They gave the experience a rating of 8.4, above the 8.0 score for face-to-face passport checks and the 8.2 score for manual boarding processes.

Moreover, 58 per cent of passengers who checked in bags received real-time bag-collection information upon arrival, with these individuals generally showing higher satisfaction rates of 8.4, especially when that data was sent straight to their mobile devices.

Additionally, 47 per cent of all passengers now use self-service tagging options for their luggage, up from 31 per cent in 2016, with another 8.4 satisfaction score.

The report also indicated that travellers are keen to explore additional tech solutions, with 74 per cent saying they would definitely make use of mobile flight and gate alerts, 57 per cent showing an interest in airport wayfinding, and the same percentage keen to use biometrics for greater ease of identification.

Ilya Gutlin, president of air travel solutions at SITA, said: "Passengers aren't deciding anymore whether they should use technology, but which technology to use. They want to make each step of the journey as easy as possible.

"Tech adoption will be driven by both context and usability. For this reason, a clear focus on the end users' demands should shape the services airlines and airports offer."

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