The Voyage Team were a sponsor and exhibitor at last week’s World Aviation Festival at the Business Design Centre in London. This is the second year we have exhibited there and again it was an excellent all round event attended by senior and influential people from across the industry.
Dave Wood, our UK Client Director, gives his thoughts and observations on aspects from the show.
It’s clear that we are in an industry where unprecedented growth and change is expected over the coming years. IATA forecasts that passenger numbers in 2037 could be as high as 8.2bn compared with the 4.3bn recorded in 2018. Flow of passengers to, from and through airports will be key to supporting these increasing numbers. This is not just to maintain, or indeed improve, passenger satisfaction in much busier airports but also because of the increasingly competitive nature of air travel; airports need to shift the ratio of aviation based revenue to non-aviation based revenue much more in favour of non-aviation streams.
Recent studies have shown that passengers typically spend 50% of their time in airports doing things they have to do rather than things they want to do or which generate revenue for the airport. Much is happening to reduce this percentage including:
- Continued growth in self-service check-in and bag-drop;
- The use of biometric technology to speed up the journey through the airport;
- Advances in personal security scanning which will lead to an end to the 100ml rule, the ability to keep technology in bags and an end inevitable fumbling with jackets, shoes etc;
- Further increases in digital fulfillment with focused apps, click & collect and pre-order of food & beverage.
Helping passengers to navigate airports is also really important for customer satisfaction, and will be even more so as passenger numbers increase to almost double current numbers. Wayfinding technology, including augmented reality, is developing fast and we are seeing some very innovative developments that take into account those with different language or other special needs.
Another key part of the picture is the consistency, availability and accuracy of airport and passenger focused data. The frustration for passengers when FIDs, App and Web displays of Flight Information don’t match is palpable. The operation of larger and busier airports also requires all staff to be able to share common real-time analytics. Addressing these challenges requires enterprise level data hubs and easy to use access methods for both staff and passengers.
At the end of the 3 day Festival it was a joy to attend the Startup Summit and see “10 pitches in 60 minutes” where 10 entrepreneurs pitched their developing companies to a panel of judges. The startups including things as diverse as tools to digitise and consolidate aircraft maintenance records, pilot and engineer training tools, a new application to aid fulfillment of eVISAs and AI to analyse and react to Call Centre performance in real-time.
The Voyage Team, based in Italy and the UK, specializes in digital systems to aid the passenger journey from “sofa to seat”.
Contact us to see how we could work together.