Sneak peak at the 2012 Airline Passenger Survey results

With the APEX event just around the corner, we are happy to announce that we have for the third year conducted a survey of passengers from around the world. We will be releasing the full report, for free as always, in the coming weeks. But until then, we thought that we would offer a few insights to wet your palette.

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Better Data

Importance of IFE&C in airline selection

We asked how much of an impact seven key factors had on choosing an airline. As expected, Ticket Price remains the most important factor. However, both the IFE System Type and In-Flight Internet Availability experience strong gains. In fact, the IFE System Type had the largest gain, reversing a downward trend, of any factor that we tested. And In-Flight Internet Availability had the 2nd largest gain but still came in as the 2nd least important factor.

Overall though, good news for this industry. We’ll clearly and visually breakdown each factor in the final report.

The impact of age and location

Here’s a few words directly from the report:

Younger and middle-aged generations are embracing the handheld technology. In spite of the overall declining trend, respondents under the age of 40 showed an increase in handheld preference year over year. Older generations still prefer the embedded systems. The increasing trend in preference for embedded systems was driven by respondents between the ages of 36-60, which saw a nearly 20% increase in preference.”

What IFE system features are important

We listed 10 features and asked respondents to rank them in order of importance. I’ve listed below a few of the more interesting results.

  • Food & Beverage Ordering rose three spots to the most important feature
  • Destination Information fell one spot to 2nd
  • Moving Map though rose one spot to 4th
  • An Outlet to Power Your Device actually fell two spots to 5th

A note on the big jump in the desire to order food and beverages. Six of the nine age groups tested ranked it as #1 with the highest placement coming from passengers aged 60+.

How passengers spend time in-flight

Getting a little creative, we cross-sectioned how people spend time in-flight by flight length and amount of time spent on the activity. As you might expect, we didn’t see much change from last year to this year. However, Browsing the Internet, which pretty well came in last in about every flight length, did rise slightly on 1-2 hour flights. Meaning that there has been a slight increase in the number of people connecting on shorter flights.

Some of the other important areas that we cover in the report:

  • Internet pricing
  • How passengers want to use the Internet
  • Hardware trends
  • Desire to stream
  • Ancillary revenue trends
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About Ben Fuller

Ben, originally from the Seattle area, has traveled the globe over the last 15 years working in sales and marketing for several technology companies. He is now the Director of Sales for Central and South America at digEcor.