|Passengers Want to Use Biometrics to Speed up Processes and Eliminate Queuing Post Pandemic|
|The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced the results of its 2021 Global Passenger Survey (GPS), which delivered two main conclusions:
“Passengers have spoken and want technology to work harder, so they spend less time ‘being processed’ or standing in queues. And they are willing to use biometric data if it delivers this result. Before traffic ramps-up, we have a window of opportunity to ensure a smooth return to travel post pandemic and deliver long-term efficiency improvements for passengers, airlines, airports and governments,” said Nick Careen, IATA’s Senior Vice President for Operations, Safety and Security.
Just over a third of passengers (36%) have experienced the use of biometric data when traveling. Of these, 86% were satisfied with the experience.
Data protection remains a key issue with 56% indicating concern about data breaches. And passengers want clarity on who their data is being shared with (52%) and how it is used/processed (51%).
With additional document checks for COVID-19, processing time at airports is taking longer. Pre-COVID-19, the average passengers spent 1.5 hours in travel processes (check-in, security, border control, customs, and baggage claim). Current data indicates that airport processing times have ballooned to 3 hours during peak time with travel volumes at only about 30% of pre-COVID-19 levels. The greatest increases are at check-in and border control (emigration and immigration) where travel health credentials are being checked mainly as paper documents.
This exceeds the time that passengers want to spend on processes at the airport. The survey found that:
IATA, working with industry stakeholders, has two mature programs which can support a successful ramping-up of aviation post-pandemic and provide travelers with the expedited experience they are demanding.
“We cannot just revert to how things were in 2019 and expect our customers to be satisfied. Pre-pandemic we were preparing to take self-service to the next level with One ID. The crisis makes its twin-promises of efficiency and cost-savings even more urgent. And we absolutely need technologies like IATA Travel Pass to re-enable self-service or the recovery will be overwhelmed by paper document checks. The GPS results are yet another proof point that change is needed,” concluded Careen.
About the GPS
GPS results are based on 13,579 responses from 186 countries. The survey provides insight into what passengers would like from their air travel experience. Visit this link to access the complete analysis.