Stats: 43% of Travelers Prefer TRAVEL COMPANIES for Air Bookings

Stats: 43% of Travelers Prefer TRAVEL COMPANIES for Air Bookings

Some 43 percent of passengers would rather work with a travel agency, travel management company or corporate travel department to book their flights. That’s from the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) newly released 2018 Global Passenger Survey (GPS), which showed that passengers want to new technology to provide them more control, information and improve efficiency if they travel, but that the human touch remains important.

Based on 10,408 responses from 145 countries, the survey provides insight into what passengers want from their flights experience. Passengers said they want:

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  • Real time journey information sent to their personal devices
  • Biometric identification to facilitate their travel processes
  • Automation of more airport processes
  • Wait times of significantly less than ten minutes at security / immigration
  • Their bags tracked throughout their journey
  • A human touch when things go wrong

Real Time Journey Information

Passengers desire to be kept informed throughout their journey via their personal device preferably.

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Receiving home elevators flight status (82%), baggage (49%) and waiting time at security / immigration (46%) were defined as passengers’ top three priorities after booking a flight.

Real-time baggage tracking through the entire journey was regarded as a must for 56 percent of passengers. Airlines and airports are facilitating this by implementing tracking at major journey points such as for example loading and unloading (IATA Resolution 753). The is also focusing on creating a global readiness arrange for the proposed introduction of RFID inlays in every baggage tags manufactured after January 2020 so as to meet passenger expectations for real-time baggage tracking.

Passengers’ preferred option for receiving info on their baggage along with other travel elements was via their mobile device. Receiving information via Smartphone or SMS app was preferred by 73 percent of passengers. Since 2016 there’s been a ten percent upsurge in passengers preferring to get travel information with a smartphone app.

Digital IS RECOMMENDED but Privacy Concerns Increase

The most passengers (65%) are prepared to share personal data for expedited security and 45 percent are prepared to replace their passports with biometric identification.

IATA’s One ID project aims to go passengers from curb to gate utilizing a single biometric travel token (fingerprint, face or iris). But concerns over data protection should be addressed.

The Human Touch Important


Passengers want more self-service options. Automated check-in was preferred by 84 percent of passengers. Most (47%) would rather sign in online utilizing a smartphone. Only 16 percent preferred traditional check-in.

Some 70 percent of passengers want self-service baggage check-in. Only 1 in three travelers prefers a realtor to tag their bag. The electronic bag tag keeps growing in popularity – well-liked by 39 percent of passengers (up 8 percentage points from 2017).

The overall experience with automated immigration procedures was rated by 74 percent of passengers favorably. An identical percentage (72%) think that automated immigration processes are faster and 65 percent believe they promote security.

The human touch is recommended by some market segments and for several situations still. For instance, senior travelers (65 years and older) have a solid preference for traditional check-in (25% vs global 17%) and bag-drop processes (42% vs global 32%). So when you can find travel disruptions 40 percent of most age ranges of passengers desire to resolve the problem on the phone and 37 percent via face-to-face interaction.

Passenger Pain Points

Passengers identified airport security / border control and boarding processes as two of these biggest pain points when travelling. The most notable frustrations with security were the intrusiveness of experiencing to eliminate personal items (57%) removing laptops / large gadgets from cabin bags (48%) and having less consistency in screening procedures at different airports (41%).

enhance the boarding experience

To, the most notable three desires of passengers tend to be more efficient queuing at boarding gates (64%), the option of overhead space on the aircraft (42%), while not having to queue on the air bridge (33%).

Source: IATA

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