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KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 16 — Passengers want to have more personal control over their journey via their smartphone and want processes at the airport to be faster, a survey by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) revealed today.

The 2019 Global Passenger Survey based on 10,877 responses from passengers across 166 countries acts as the voice of the passenger, providing objective and in-depth insights into the preferences and behaviours of air travellers around the world, helping to guide industry initiatives.

In a statement today, IATA said an airline app was the preferred method of booking for passengers from one of the world’s largest aviation markets, with 24 per cent of travellers from North Asia preferring this method.

“It was also the second most popular choice among passengers in the Middle East, favoured by 14 per cent of travellers. Booking through an airline website, although less popular than in 2018, remains the method of choice for most travellers globally (39 per cent),” it said.

The survey also found that 70 per cent of passengers were willing to share additional personal information, including their biometric identifiers to speed up processes at the airport.

Over half of passengers (53 per cent) said they would be more likely to check their bags if they were able to track it throughout the journey, and 46 per cent said they want to be able to track their bags and have it delivered directly to an off-airport location if that service was available.

“Passengers want onboard Wi-fi. Some 53 per cent of surveyed passengers found Wi-fi important to have. The importance is the highest in Africa (71 per cent), Latin America (68 per cent) and the Middle East (67 per cent) and the lowest in Europe (44 per cent) and North America (49 per cent),” said the survey.

With availability of Wi-fi connectivity continuing to have a direct impact on the overall travel experience, adopting the latest onboard Wi-fi technology continues to be an effective way for airlines to distinguish their product offering, said IATA, which represents some 290 airlines comprising 82 per cent of global air traffic.

To improve the boarding experience, the top three suggestions from passengers are more efficient queueing at the boarding gate (60 per cent), not needing to get a bus to the aircraft (51 per cent), and more bin space for cabin luggage (46 per cent), it said.

— BERNAMA

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