Investments to improve the passenger experience pay off for airlines and airports

According to the SITA 2019 Air Transport IT Insights, published at SITA’s Euro IT Summit in Lisbon, Portugal, airlines and airports are enjoying a return on their record 2018 US$50 billion spend on IT to support improvements to the passenger journey.

Matthys Serfontein, SITA president, Air Travel Solutions, said: “The good news is that the growing investment in automating the passenger journey means the industry is providing a faster, more pleasant airport experience. This is a real success story for automating the passenger journey, particularly at a time when we expect passenger numbers to double over the next 20 years, with physical airport infrastructure struggling to keep pace. Technology is key to alleviating the industry’s capacity crunch and avoiding negative impacts on passengers.”

Projections for 2019 show investments will continue to grow.

Serfontein said: “The increase in airline spend over the past year was driven by the larger airlines which continue to invest to speed up the pace of digital transformation. Investments in business intelligence and cloud services have emerged as priorities.”

Continuing investment in real-time and historic data views of operations has led to airlines and airports to proactively manage everything from baggage and passenger flows, to aircraft turnaround and the allocation of key assets, such as parking stands and gates.

Serfontein said: “Overall, we can see that the industry is focused on improvements to its operations to make it more efficient and facilitate better collaboration with partners and other stakeholders in what is a highly integrated industry. This in turn is having a profoundly positive impact on the service they are able to provide to passengers.”

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