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Passengers use tech vs travel hassles – survey

Travelers now rely on technology to avoid hassles and improve their experience, based on 6,920 responses from passengers in more than 145 countries gathered under the 2016 Global Passenger Survey (GPS) of the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

The survey revealed that people want to arrive at the airport ready to fly and prefer to pass through security and border control once without having to remove personal items. They favor uniquely-tailored travel options – and are prepared to offer their personal data to access them. Furthermore, they want to have the same connectivity in the air as on the ground.

The survey showed passengers want to be able to do more of the traditional airport processes “off airport” by taking advantage of the latest digital self-service options.

In 2016, the percentage of passengers who checked-in online and used a mobile boarding pass rather than a printed one increased from 69 percent in 2015 to 71 percent.

According to the GPS, most passengers are keen to see the baggage process shaken up with 33 percent of those surveyed wanting to self-tag their bags and 39 percent to use electronic bag tags.

A considerable number of passengers would like to travel to the airport “baggage free”: 26 percent want their luggage picked up from home and delivered to the airport and 24 percent want to be able to drop off their luggage away from the airport.

In addition, 61 percent of passengers expressed interest in tracking their bag throughout the journey. Airlines are facilitating this by adopting IATA’s baggage Resolution 753 which tracks bags at major journey points such as loading and unloading.

“Passengers want to arrive at the airport ready to fly by taking advantage of “off airport” digital self-service options. IATA is helping the industry make this a reality for more travelers through its Fast Travel Program. If the industry meets its internal program goals, then by 2020, 80 percent of global passengers will have access to more self-service options,” noted Pierre Charbonneau, IATA’s Director, Passenger and Facilitation.