FCM’s Innovation Spotlight: August

Travel News 25 Aug 2017

Business class passengers will be able to take advantage of an exciting new Virtual Reality entertainment platform being trialed by Air France. The airline says that the new headset will offer immersive 3D and 2D entertainment, with roughly 40 films available on the technology during its testing phase. Noise-cancelling headphones will complement the experience, allowing customers to immerse themselves in digital worlds as they fly.


The Transport Security Administration has started testing a new Pre-Check procedure for passengers which uses scanning technology to match the name on a passenger’s identification to the TSA Secure Flight system. This eliminates the requirement for passengers to use their boarding passes when going through security. Being pre-screened to use TSA Pre-Check will allow you to pass through the security line even faster. All you need to do is present your ID to be scanned by the TSA agent and it will be verified before your bags are even inspected. The new program is designed to identify and reduce the number of people using false identification to board a plan, while also speeding customer service and allowing you to get to your flight faster. This technology is currently only available at select airports around the country, such as Dulles, O’Hare, Austin-Bergstrom and Ronald Reagan in Washington. However, TSA officials say they are planning to expand further, so it may soon be coming to an airport near you.


Miami International is now the worlds first airport to build Mobile Passport Control into their own mobile app. Up until now mobile passport control has only been available through the U.S. Customs and Border Control Mobile Passport app. This has allowed U.S. and Canadian customers at 21 American airports to use a digital bar-code receipt instead of their passport when interacting with customs agents. Users enter their personal and travel-related information, answer custom questions and take photos of themselves in order to create the digital credential. The intention is to allow passengers to do what they would usually do at the entry kiosk on the airport app, streamlining the experience for passengers.

JetBlue customers will soon have access to a new integrated customer service interface that the airline hopes will offer a better and more seamless traveler experience. By partnering with technology firm Gladly, JetBlue has developed a platform that allows users to switch between channels when communicating with staff, moving from Twitter to email or from Facebook to phone without having to reiterate the entire conversation.  It is hoped that this will allow customers to interact more easily with the service staff designed to help them, just another small way in which the application of new technology is helping improve the customer experience in the travel space.