Skift Take

That passengers are willing to pay for some conveniences that would otherwise be free--such as flight updates, in-seat power, and better baggage tracking--tells you everything you need to know about the state of affairs in today's air passenger experience. There are projects underway to solve these issues, and no one has talked about charging for them. We hope this doesn't give anyone funny ideas.

Millennials are more willing to pay for premium conveniences when traveling by air, says OAG’s FlightView, a real-time flight and day-of-travel information solutions provider which offers consumers flight update apps for iOS and Android devices.

The results come from a survey the company conducted this June of 2,339 travelers; 37% business travelers, and 63% leisure travelers.

The most in-demand solutions are RFID tags for baggage tracking in real time, high-capacity, fast Wi-Fi, and in-seat power.

Of the ∼60% of travelers (∼75% of millennials) who would gladly pay for premium services at the airport, conveniences that improve the airport terminal experience and keep friends and family updated were most attractive.

  • 53% would pay for RFID enabled real-time baggage tracking
  • 50% would pay for in-seat power.
  • 40% would pay for temporary luggage check-in, to shop and dine unencumbered by their bags.
  • 37% would pay for priority baggage claim.
  • 35% would pay for curbside rental car pickup.
  • 31% would pay for text messaging capabilities.
  • 26% would pay for flight status alerts sent automatically to third parties like family, work, hotel or ground transport.
  • 18% would pay for pre-orderd food and drinks at airport restaurants and cafes via mobile.

Half of all passengers surveyed, and 60% of millennials, would pay a premium to airlines, especially for services related to their high-tech lifestyles. Of those, 64% would pay for high-performance Wi-Fi (with streaming capability).

The survey also found that nine out of ten travelers value in-flight televisions or displays that show the status of connecting flights and the same ratio of travelers surveyed who use wearable tech want day-of-travel updates and alerts sent direct to their wearable devices.

“Ultimately, it comes down to convenience, communication and choice,” says Mike Benjamin, CEO of FlightView. “That’s what today’s travelers want and are willing to dig deeper in their pockets for.”

He adds: “Our survey found that airport and airline executives may be overlooking a real opportunity to drive new revenues and improve the travel experience.”

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Tags: millennials, passenger experience, paxex

Photo credit: Rendering of an airport bar with iPad tablets from OTG. OTG

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