More Efficient Business Travel? Coming Soon, Says IATA

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According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the aviation industry is devising the means to streamline many of the more aggravating aspects of air travel, opting to enhance visibility and convenience for customers.

While speaking on the matter at the World Passenger Symposium in Abu Dhabi, Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO stated, “Airlines expect to carry some 3 billion passengers in 2013. And that number will double by 2030. Connectivity is a critical component of modern economies. Serving that growing demand will require innovation. We need to understand what consumers expect and what they value enough to pay for. Aviation is team effort. And that is a challenge for all industry stakeholders. Travel agents, airports, air navigation service providers, regulators, manufacturers, ground service providers, global distribution systems (GDSs) and many others must work together to make each passenger journey as safe, secure, seamless and convenient as possible.”

Though the measures are not specifically aimed at business travel, the most frequent fliers tend to do so for their jobs, and so stand to gain the most benefit from efforts to make the process more efficient. With business travelers accustomed to having access to mobile devices for everything from expense management to itineraries, the expansion toward faster self-service and a more technologically-driven experience is bound to make for happier travelers. Expected improvements include walk-through security clearance, known-traveler lanes, and more tailored options based on purchasing behavior.

“IATA’s Global Passenger Survey reveals that 52% of travelers are eager to print out their own bag tags at home and 77% would prefer to use a self-boarding gate at an airport.” said Tyler. “Our 2020 vision is for a fast, seamless curb to airside experience that is predictable, repeatable, secure and globally consistent.”

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