More mobile tech and onboard Wi-Fi
Delta, with Wi-Fi across its entire fleet, has been the most innovative carrier here. One recent launch is an app, available for Apple, Android and BlackBerry, that tracks baggage. Passengers can enter the number on their baggage receipts or just scan the barcode. They receive instant updates on whether their bag has been successfully loaded on to the aircraft and which carousel it can be collected from at the arrival destination. Extra-paranoid passengers can even access the app while they are in the air, thanks to Delta’s inflight Wi-Fi.
Travellers will find Wi-Fi available on a growing number of flights: American will complete installation of onboard Wi-Fi in 2013; United will outfit close to half its fleet ; and Southwest will have 75 percent of its fleet equipped, and may roll out video-on-demand, in 2013, if testing goes well.
● Automated check-in is a useful innovation that can cut travel time and hassles. British Airways is already trying it: Those who choose this option while booking their flight will be checked in, assigned a seat (which the passenger can change), and sent an electronic boarding pass 24 hours before departure. Once the passengers’ seating preferences are on record, the airline will ensure they are automatically checked in to just such a seat. If the try-outs on the French routes go well, BA plans to roll it out across its network by the end of 2013.
● Bilund, a tiny Danish airport, has laid claim to an innovation that allows passengers to print their bag tags and boarding passes at home, rather than queue up at an airport desk or kiosk. The passenger has to fold the printouts, place it in a plastic cover, attach it to their bags and deposit them at a dedicated Express Drop desk at the airport. Following a successful six-month development and testing period—in which Thomas Cook Airlines tried out the scheme—the home-printed bag tag has become a permanent offering. The airport plans to take this further, and install self bag-drop to remove the need for an airline agent to be involved in any stage of the check-in and bag-drop process.
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(This story appears in the 22 March, 2013 issue of Forbes India. To visit our Archives, click here.)
The corporate reaveler would definitely welcome any apps or process which would reduce time at an airport.the passport of an individual is a good way to find out how much an individual travels,besides a frequent flier number. The question is \" will security concerns ,threats \" permit the traveler to by pass cumbersome airport process ? Ravi Budhwar Ex Vp;Kuoni Business travel ,India.on Mar 20, 2013
The US, probably the most vigilant in its security requirements since 9/11 is doing a rethink on this. Much of the this is egged on by the tourism agencies- who have suffered most because of restrictions. The idea now is to use technology to be able to improve screening.on Mar 21, 2013