More air passengers using self-service, mobile offerings: SITA

AIRLINE passengers want greater control of their journey and are looking for more self-service and mobile-based offerings during travel, according to the 2012 SITA/Air Transport World Passenger Self-Service Survey.

Based on responses from 2,526 international passengers passing through airports in Abu Dhabi, Beijing, Frankfurt, Atlanta, Mumbai and Sao Paulo, the survey found that 70 per cent of passengers now carry smartphones, which is fueling demand for services such as self-boarding and flight information updates via their mobile devices.

This year, websites were the most frequently used platform for check-in with 79 per cent of respondents using them regularly or occasionally. Kiosk usage also increased, with 77 per cent of passengers using them for check-in. Mobile check-ins grew by one third during this period, while 21 per cent of passengers used a mobile boarding pass.

Seventy per cent of respondents used a self-service channel to check-in on the day of the survey, up from 54 per cent last year.

Close to 90 per cent of passengers surveyed rated flight status updates on their mobile devices and self-boarding as their top self-service technologies, while 68 per cent picked automated bag drop as one of their top self-service offerings.

Sixty-five per cent of respondents said they would use flight status updates if offered via social media platforms, while 89 per cent would use them if offered via mobile devices.

Passengers surveyed also demonstrated a lack of enthusiasm for receiving service promotion or retail offers on their mobile phones, with just over half open to receiving advertising.

However, of those who were reluctant to receive advertising, 61 per cent said they would change their minds if airlines and airports personalised the messages, made them relevant and allowed passengers to control their delivery.

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