For many airports around the world, they’ve got with paperless tickets. You just walk up to the booth at the airport, giving them your passport, and they’ll see that you’ve purchased a ticket for whatever flight. They still hand you a physical boarding pass, but that part is about to change as well.
The International Air Transport Association, which represents 94% of scheduled international travel on 240 airlines, has agreed to a global standard for mobile barcodes that can effectively replace physical boarding passes. Instead of a slip of paper, a barcode image is sent to your mobile phone and it can be scanned to grant you entry onto the plane.
“Passengers want the convenience of self-service options in a paperless environment,” said Giovanni Bisignani, IATA’s director general and CEO, in a statement. “This standard is an important step in getting rid of paper that bogs down processes and drives up costs.”
Full 100% implementation of this new standard is expected by the end of 2010, resulting in industry savings of more than $500 million a year.