PTE 2013 - Leveraging technology to meet changing passenger demands | SITA

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PTE 2013 - Leveraging technology to meet changing passenger demands

Published on  11 April by Catherine Mayer , Vice President, SITA
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Human touch on demand

Passengers are increasingly more in charge of their travel experience. What, when and how they buy, and at what price, is now in their domain. Airports, airlines and other sellers have to adapt.

Beyond 2015 ... the survey trends

SITA's four annual surveys and reports - Airline IT Trends, Airport IT Trends, Passenger Self-Service and the Baggage Report - all point to growing passenger autonomy. The big drivers of this trend are mobile technology and social media.

Buying behavior for travel is changing. By 2015, web and mobile will be the top two sales channels. Airports, airlines and other service providers must have attractive, personalized, user-friendly mobile and web applications to meet their customers' evolving needs.

Self-service is coming of age. Passengers are welcoming self-service for bag-drop, boarding and transfer. By 2015, airlines and airports will have implemented new capabilities, such as self-printing bag-tags, unstaffed bag-drop locations, self-boarding and transfer kiosks.

Customer service is going mobile. Passengers are very accepting of multi-channel customer service. They use the airline website, sms / text messaging, and dedicated mobile apps to receive flight status information. By 2015, customer service will be both mobile and social.

Beyond 2015 ... the technology trends

Technology continues to evolve at faster and faster speeds. Today's next big thing is tomorrow's old news. Several technology trends are already beginning to take hold that will change the way passengers travel - and the way airlines and airports cater to travelers.

These technology trends include:

  • Wearable computing - smart glasses that guide passengers through the airport
  • Flexible screen technology - thin and light weight, plastic instead of glass, bendable visual displays
  • Near field communications and mobile payments
  • WiFi positioning systems - tracking passenger flows through the airport

Mining big data and using business intelligence will allow airports and airlines to capitalize on these trends and meet the demands of tomorrow's traveler.

Beyond 2015 ... leveraging technology to meet evolving passenger expectations

Travel and buying experiences will become more and more personalized as passengers seek greater control over information and processes.

Self-service will expand as a result, but so will access to "human touch on demand," via multiple channels.

Mobile will remain dominant with web and social technologies dominating, but kiosks will still have their place.

Airports, airlines and other service providers will incorporate wearable and flexible technologies to reduce costs and improve customer service.

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