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New initiatives towards simplifying passenger air travel with pre- and post flight self-service options

19 February 2008

In 2004 IATA launched “Simplifying the Business”, an industry-wide programme designed to make passenger travel easier and more efficient. It comprises five core projects:

  • the implementation of 100% electronic ticketing

  • bar coded boarding passes

  • common use self-service check-in

  • radio frequency identification (for baggage in addition to several other areas)

  • paper free air cargo with IATA e-freight electronic document system

Now, Simplifying the Business is entering a new phase, with the development of processes supporting of a new set of self-service solutions enabling passengers to manage all aspects of the journey from reservations to arrival: check-in; baggage processing; documentation checks; irregular operations (situations of disrupted travel); boarding and post-flight activities.

“According to our latest Corporate Air Travel Survey the majority of passengers favour airlines with greater self-service options,” said Philippe Bruyère, IATA’s Programme Director for Simplifying the Business. “It’s not surprising because the modern customer wants speed, convenience and control. The new set of projects will give them that and at the same time allow airlines to become more efficient.”

Check-in will be increasingly automated using the Internet, self-service kiosks and mobile phones. Passengers will save time, as they will be able to tag their own luggage and use common bag drop off points. They will also have the possibility to self-validate standard travel documents. For irregular operations, pilot projects are looking at giving travellers the ability to issue new boarding passes or even meal vouchers when flights are delayed or cancelled.

The final self-service kiosk project will encompass boarding and post-flight activities, allowing passengers to file a baggage claim in the unfortunate event that baggage is lost or damaged.

More information on Simplifying the Business