FlightView From the Sky blog

Why Ancillary Services Go Hand-In-Hand with Mobile

Posted by Katherine Wellman on Jun 07, 2013 @ 11:23 AM

ancillary services airlines mobile

If you’re like me, you avoid purchasing ancillary services like the plague when you book your airline ticket.  After feeling as though I’ve finally succeeded at finding the lowest fare to my destination, at least for the moment, I have no interest in spending more money on in-flight Wi-Fi, extra bags, early boarding privileges, or a lounge day pass (I’m 5’ 1” so extra legroom is a bit unnecessary for me).   In fact, with so many extra fees associated with booking airline tickets today, I feel great about getting away with 1 fee plus tax!

But how about the day I fly?  I may have gotten up at 4am to make an outbound flight and now it is 7pm and I’m arriving at the airport to catch a 9:30pm flight home.  I’m exhausted and that airline lounge sounds mighty appealing for the next 2 hours.  Or I may have arrived at the gate only to find out the plane is completely full; meanwhile I know I need to bring my bag on the flight so I can quickly deplane and grab a cab to a business meeting.  Paying for early boarding privileges is ideal.

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Topics: airlines, marketing, ancillary, boarding, mobile, wifi

When Airport Self-Service Goes Wrong

Posted by Mike Benjamin on Apr 24, 2013 @ 12:19 PM

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Topics: business travel, airlines, experience, airport, self-service, customer service, boarding, mobile, flight, technology, delay, app

The Self-Service Airport Revolution

Posted by Mike Benjamin on Apr 12, 2013 @ 01:02 PM

airport self-service kiosks

Flying to Atlanta last week, it struck me that a familiar part of the airport experience was missing – the staff.  There was a noticeable reduction in the number of agents on duty at ticket and gate counters, but their absence wasn’t causing chaos the way it would have in the past. The reason? Self-service is becoming status quo as travelers are increasingly comfortable using technology to navigate the airport. A passenger can use a kiosk to self check-in, then FIDS (flight information display systems), websites or mobile apps to check flight status which means fewer questions for gate agents to answer.

As it turns out, passengers aren’t only comfortable with self-service, they prefer it. A recent survey from SITA found that the most stressful part of a trip is fear of missing a flight, which is exactly what can happen when travelers have to wait in long lines at bottlenecks like check-in, bag drop and ID-check before going through security. Convenience and speed through processing checkpoints definitely help get passengers to the gate, but self-service options are valued at every point in the trip. The most welcome features among survey participants were flight status updates via mobile phone, self-boarding gates and kiosks for flight transfers.

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Topics: experience, airport, displays, self-service, customer service, boarding, mobile, technology, travel, check-in, SITA

Airline IT Trends Point to Mobile

Posted by Ev Jordan on Apr 08, 2013 @ 01:24 PM

airline IT trends mobile

While senior IT executives at the top 200 airlines worldwide were “cautiously optimistic” about IT investment in a 2012 SITA survey, this much is clear: economic uncertainty and unpredictable jet fuel prices aren’t dampening enthusiasm for upgrading passenger mobile services. In fact, it tops the lists of investments for the second consecutive year, with 60% of airlines planning major investments in mobile passenger services over the next three years. Here’s a look at where those IT dollars will go.

According to SITA’s 2012 Passenger Self-Service survey, 74% of travelers interviewed booked their travel online, but only 3% purchased tickets via mobile devices or social media. Airlines are looking to change that – 70% said that after 2015, mobile will be the second most important sales channel behind the Web. 90% of airlines plan to sell tickets via mobile and 83% will sell ancillary services via mobile. Passengers should be able to purchase ticket modifications and upgrades, preferred boarding access, choice seating, airline lounge access, in-flight amenities and pay baggage fees all via a mobile device by 2015.

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Topics: airlines, tracking, experience, self-service, customer service, ancillary, boarding, mobile, technology, app, check-in, SITA

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