Airline passengers prefer self-service tech


By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Thursday, 26 May, 2016


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Airline passengers worldwide have become so comfortable with technology that they are increasingly choosing to use it rather than interacting with people, a new survey shows.

The latest annual SITA Passenger IT Trends Survey finds that the majority (55%) of airline passengers use some self-service technology on their journey.

When using mobiles to travel, an overwhelming 92% find check-in easy to use, and 91% of travellers using self-service check-in technology plan to do so again and again. In addition, 56% of customers using self-service baggage bag drop plan to use it again in the future.

But the survey also finds that end-to-end self-service trips are still a rare experience. Passengers also indicate they want airlines to introduce more mobile services, with baggage notifications being a top priority.

And while customers take warmly to self-service technology, passengers use technology in different ways, and a one-size-fits-all approach risks alienating some users.

SITA has identified four behaviour profiles of passengers — careful planner, pampered, hyper-connected and open-minded adventurer. Each of these passenger types interacts with technology in a different way.

According to the research, 85% of passengers across all types had a positive travel experience, up from 80% last year. Experiences were particularly highly rated at the booking stage, where multiple technology options are available to improve the experience.

While 92% of passengers are happy during waiting time, the survey finds that when it comes to customer satisfaction, providing poor quality services like food, entertainment and shopping is worse than not providing any.

Image courtesy Michael Coghlan under CC

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