In this blog, Valour Consultancy’s senior analyst David Whelan shares his thoughts on the rise of digital cabin applications. This article was first published in Onboard Hospitality magazine. You can access the full publication here.
As the aviation industry emerges from the COVID downturn and global air passenger numbers begin to recover, many airlines are looking to digital cabin applications to improve operational efficiency and increase passenger satisfaction.
Many carriers have sought to reduce touchpoints in the cabin and minimise unnecessary interaction between crew and passengers. Crew-facing tools such as cabin management applications are optimising operations onboard by reducing the amount of time that the crew has to spend performing repetitive tasks, and freeing up time to focus on passenger needs.
Leading solutions help the crew perform pre-, in- and post-flight tasks all in one easy-to-use platform. As well as filling in and submitting reports, applications can also help crew members keep track of passenger specific information such as dietary requirements or pre-flight requests. Key to this are passenger seat maps, which enable the crew to keep track of the whole cabin as well as focussing in on individual passenger requirements at the touch of a button.
Cabin management apps, as well as wireless IFE platforms, are proving particularly popular among LCCs that are keen to maximise operational efficiency and enhance ancillary revenue generation.
The number of LCC aircraft equipped with a cabin management application is set to grow from around 1,800 today to more than 5,000 by the end of the decade.
Valour Consultancy recently published a report on the current and future market potential for connected digital applications, in the cockpit and the cabin. Check out this free infographic which summarises more of the key findings from the research.
In addition to cabin management tools, app-based POS platforms such as those from AirFi (pictured top), Retail inMotion and Gategroup are enabling airlines to revolutionise onboard sales and ancillary revenue generation. As well as payment processing, these solutions can also assist with inventory management, load passenger pre-order information, keep track of passenger loyalty points, and offer upselling opportunities.
There are a myriad of benefits to digitalising the cabin and an increasing number of airlines are looking to holistic cabin management as a necessity, rather than a ‘nice to have’.