20 DECEMBER 2010

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Article from BTNews 20 DECEMBER 2010

Air transport is bar coded

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has announced a historic milestone in passenger travel with the 100% worldwide implementation of 2D bar coded boarding passes (BCBP).  These replace the previous generation of more expensive and less efficient magnetic stripe boarding passes.

The completion of the industry project gives passengers greater choice in checking-in at home, at a kiosk, on a mobile device or at an airport check-in counter.  BCBP also allows airlines to issue a single, printed boarding pass for multiple flights, simplifying the journey for passengers with flight connections or those travelling on different airlines.  Moreover, BCBP opens the door for automated access to premium services.  For example, with a scan of a BCBP, eligible passengers can access fast-track security lanes or lounges.

“Airlines issue over 2bn boarding passes every year.  The conversion to printed 2D BCBP has been a five-year project and will save the industry up to US$1.5bn every year.  With more and more airlines offering the possibility to receive the bar code via a mobile device, we are well on the way to truly paperless travel,” said Giovanni Bisignani, IATA’s Director General and CEO. www.iata.org

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