What’s the Future of Air Transportation?

As of the moment, several countries have started to reopen as we all slowly recover from Covid19. As the travel industry shifts and starts working toward a rebound the world of travel will change forever.  As we write this there had been a 65.1% reduction of scheduled flights worldwide last June 2020 in comparison to June 2019.

Airlines and anyone in the travel space are having to scramble and rethink new ways to meet the increase in passenger demands. On top of this, airports are also finding new options to give their fliers the assurance that their facilities are safe to visit and use. So apart from requiring employees/passengers to wear masks and maintain social distancing, airlines are now pressured to adapt to the new normal by shifting to more modern solutions.

Terence Young, a principal and regional aviation leader at architecture firm Gensler said, “Cleanliness and communication are key.” As they reinvent new ways to promote both safety and consistent communication, there are several ways that this new normal will change airline procedures along with our recommended solutions.

  1. Required Temperature Checks pre-flight (and or post!)
    • Air Canada is one of the first few airlines who now mandatorily conduct temperature check pre-flight. This worked well with their ‘Clean Care’ program as they included health questionnaires for fliers to fill out.

Recommendation: Contactless Temperature Sensing and Mask Detection Kiosks can help reduce face-to-face interactions. This would help give assurance to your travelers while reducing the risk for frontline employees as well. Running a thermal test would guarantee that only those who are fit to fly can enter the premise and that you are not putting anyone else at risk by missing to scan one ill passenger. Products like OmniTemp can be easily integrated with the airline’s current platform for easy monitoring, alerts and reporting. Solutions are also available to integrate to existing kiosks.

  1. Intensified Social Distancing Protocols
    • Maintaining social distancing is one of the protocols that’s mandated by the government. It can easily be observed as of the moment as there are not many travelers yet. But how will airlines cope with this rule once the travelers go back? Widening and renovating the productions space is one of the options but would require a bagful of budget to proceed.

Recommendation: Some airlines have started to use floor markings to give enough personal space to each traveler based on the available floor area. Implementation of floor arrows designating the foot traffic flow will also be seen to help guide the travelers and lessen the need to ask airport personnel basic mapping questions. Some airports like Orlando International Airport have also promoted the use of acrylic shields on common areas such as restaurants, ticket lobbies and retail counters.  We are working with airports to help them utilize mobile to track users and provide heat mapping to show areas for travelers to avoid or better ways to manage traffic flow.

  1. Push notifications for Airline changes and Boarding times
    • Since Social distancing has to be observed at all times, John Holland-Kaye of Heathrow actually said, “Just one jumbo jet would require a queue a kilometer long.” True enough, this will put the travelers on a very exhausting line marking a very unsatisfactory customer experience! Through a good mobile solution, you can notify or text your travelers about changes on their flight details like gates or boarding times once they are within a certain perimeter.

Recommendation: Since there had been an enormous increase in mobile app usage, its effective and easier than ever to implement solutions to provide personalized touchless experience for your travelers. Geofencing options or can notify users of information, changes in location or business times , according to one of  New York Times’ report. There are different mobile solutions that you can go for. Native apps are the most common one but the emerging efficiency of using Progressive Web apps  provide the same functionality for your travelers without the hassle of having to download the heavy, traditional apps via Play store. Mobile notifications and new features with traveler login, can drive more personalized approaches to service.

Airports are going to transform and some of the tools above will be key to ensure they become transportation hubs not just air but all points of travel.   To do this effectively local and travel information needs to be readily available and airports must embrace the omnichannel.  Providing seamless mobile solutions, interactive kiosks and more relevant digital signage is core to setting the stage for this transformation.   If you would like to learn more, see some of our projects and how we are transforming airport engagement email or call us for a touchless solution and safety focused engagement @ OmniExperience at 833-300-6664 or email [email protected]