Travel By Air Frustrations Revealed By Survey

Travel by air, land or sea brings with it the opportunity for traveler frustration on a number of levels. On land, extra holiday traffic, extra fees at hotels or resorts and other potential unknowns take their toll. At sea, the inclusive nature of a cruise handles most of the potential problem areas but, as with any travel, the unanticipated can be a negative. When it comes to air travel, the biggest problem by far has nothing to do with airlines, pilots or flight attendants.

A full 75 percent of air travellers are most frustrated by the time it takes for them to make it through security checks, says a recent study by the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

Taking off shoes and belts, sorting through electronic items and removing liquids from their carry-on bags all add up to huge frustration. It is such a bother to travelers that 75 percent would rather go through a full-body scanner than have a full pat down by a security officer.

In other findings of the nearly 3,000 travelers from 114 countries surveyed who had traveled by air in the past 12 months:

  • 73 percent were willing to share personal background information with governments in order to speed up security screening.
  • 77 percent were comfortable with using biometric identification for more convenient airport transit.
  • 71 percent would prefer to use a self-boarding device at the gate, such as a mobile phone.
  • 86 percent were prepared to provide the airline their passport details in advance to allow a smoother journey.
  • 91 percent said they would be interested if providing passport details in advance would allow a faster arrival process.
“Keeping these and other important findings in mind, the IATA has come up with several recommendations for airlines, airports and governments to follow to make air travel smoother and hassle-free,” said Kenneth Dunlap, IATA’s Director of Security & Facilitation in an Economic Times report. Among the IATA-driven recommendations for airlines is the development of a Known Traveler Program that would ask governments to develop capabilities for data-driven risk assessment through identity authentication and verification.

IATA also reported that airlines are expected to return a profit of $6.7 billion in 2012, expected to improve to $8.4 billion in 2013.

[Photo Credit- Flickr user Old Shoe Woman]