Brazilian Air Travellers Take the Lead on Passenger Self-Service

The global SITA / Air Transport World Passenger Self-Service survey of the world’s leading airports has found Brazilians to be among the world’s fastest adopters of any self-service technology, which makes life easier for the air traveller.

This was especially evident in attitudes towards bag management. The survey found that while 79% are interested in printing their own bag tags at the airport, 83% would do it at home or in the office if they could. Brazilian passengers would like to go one step further: 83% would utilise off-airport bag drop and while globally 66% of respondents would use a kiosk for claiming a lost bag in Brazil this rises to 90%.

The popularity of the kiosk at Sao Paulo Guarulhos also shines through in the response to other potential uses of kiosks such as booking or changing a flight; purchasing additional services (e.g. baggage fees, meals) and self-transferring. Interest in these options is particularly high among Brazilian travellers running at over 80%.

Kiosk use for check-in has also increased in popularity at Sao Paulo Guarulhos, jumping from 37% in 2009 to 76% of survey respondents this year who regularly have chosen to do so.

There is extremely high interest among Brazilian passengers in using airline websites for more than just booking a flight. Over 90% would add their frequent flyer information online and modify their reservations.

The use of online booking – when they can – by passengers at Sao Paulo Guarulhos, is now running at 87%, a rate which is second only to the world’s busiest airport, Atlanta.

The percentage of travellers who have never used online check-in has dropped from 89% last year to 46% this year but online check-in is only used intermittently by 49% and frequent users are just 5% compared to 57% at Atlanta airport.

While globally the main reason stated for not using online check-in was having bags to check in (27%), the main obstacle at Sao Paulo Guarulhos, where there was a high percentage of leisure travellers in the survey sample, was respondents’ difficulty in checking in co-travellers.

Norbert Steiger, SITA regional vice president for Latin America and the Caribbean, said: “Sao Paulo Guarulhos is a great example of how the strategic use of airport kiosks at key points in the passenger journey can encourage the adoption of self-service and improve passenger management in a busy airport environment. This airport has set the benchmark for the use of bag drop. It is also encouraging for airlines to see how enthusiastic Brazilian passengers are about using airline websites for additional services.”

The 5th annual SITA / Air Transport World Passenger Self-Service survey is an in-depth look at the attitudes and habits of a representative sample of the 287.6 million passengers who use seven leading international airports. Alongside Sao Paulo Guarulhos, it includes: Beijing International Airport; Frankfurt; Hartsfield-Jackson, Atlanta; Moscow Domodedovo; Mumbai International and OR Tambo Airport, Johannesburg.

The survey data is extracted from interviews with 2,490 passengers travelling with 106 airlines, conducted at the departure gates earlier this year. Main nationalities interviewed were American (17%), Indian (12%), Chinese (12%), Brazilian (11%), German (8%), South African (8%), Russian (7%), others (25%).

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