Travelers’ Tech Demands Create Huge Opportunity for Airports & Airlines



Two new research reports reveal high traveler expectations for travel-related mobile services and present opportunities for airlines and airports to generate ancillary revenue while providing best-in-class customer service.

The rapid proliferation and capabilities of mobile technology in recent years has made smartphones and other mobile devices as important to travelers as credit cards and identification. Of the 2,600 business and leisure travelers surveyed by FlightView Inc., 80% use a smartphone and more than 35% use a tablet and/or laptop while in the air.

Today’s travelers want to access timely, relevant day-of-travel information via their mobile devices to help smooth travel disruptions and aid better decision making.  Also, they are more comfortable with self-service options since it’s often faster and easier to access information or complete transactions online than to wait in an actual line to speak with a live person.

Here’s how airports and airlines can keep travelers happy by providing the information they want while generating ancillary revenue that keeps balance sheets in the black.

What airlines and airports can do today. With airports and flights more crowded than ever coupled with extreme weather events, travel disruptions are all too common. Keeping travelers informed about delays or other events lets them act immediately to lessen the negative impact, reduce their stress, or even improve their experience. What information is most valuable to travelers that airports and airlines can deliver via mobile devices?

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  • 94% want flight status information pushed to mobile devices before take-off
  • 75% want mobile alerts when a flight is boarding
  • 57% want mobile alerts on seat upgrade options

Travelers expect airlines and airports to provide this information since they know it’s readily available, and what better way to improve and strengthen customer loyalty than to be the trusted source of day-of-travel communication?

Looking ahead. According to FlightView President & CEO Michael Benjamin, “Innovative offerings that were nice-to-have five years ago are now critical to staying competitive in today’s market. Airports and airlines that effectively use mobile adoption to their advantage will see the greatest rewards in both customer loyalty and ancillary revenue.” As mobile capabilities expand, so too will customer expectations. Here’s what airlines and airports can expect travelers to request in the near future:

  • Over 66% of those surveyed want to be able to rebook on another flight via a mobile devic
  • 66% want to view airport terminal maps
  • 35% want the ability to purchase ticket upgrades, book ground transportation, and view coupons for airport shops and restaurants

The information provided here is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the traveler survey results.  For a more complete description of how the 2,600 travelers responded, download the two reports – one focused on airlines and one focused on airports, at