How technology will change the face of air travel

Today, the business flight is a major part of working life. Companies with offices in several different locations practically demand boarding planes to travel thousands of miles for
important meetings.

Whilst adjusting to different time zones and spending several hours up in the air might seem like big sacrifices, the business flight is changing in many exciting ways.

Executive air travel is becoming far more comfortable and convenient, tooling up passengers with what they need. Technology has already seen great strides being made, but more is to come.

>See also: The future of the online travel trade

Reliable internet access, on-board apps and comfortable seats are what executive passengers can expect in the coming years.

On the planes themselves, in-flight entertainment will no longer consist of a second-rate romcom or bland in-house magazine show. Some airlines are allowing executive passengers
to personalise their own entertainment, letting them stream their own music and video using specific apps or superfast Wi-Fi.

In the fast lane

Speaking of WiFi, a handful of airlines have introduced WiFi to some of their aircraft, partly an an experimental measure. Expect speeds to pick up in the near future, providing executive passengers with a reliable connection to do their work while they wait to arrive at the destination.

Cloud technology is also expected to have a positive impact on executive air travel. There to help pilots navigate safely, a cloud-enabled safety management system used by all pilots for the same airline will give those in the cockpit all the tools they need in just one place. In case of turbulence or something more serious, pilots will soon be able to report problems instantly.

>See also: What does technology mean for the future of business travel?

Instant bookings

Speed will also feature in the way executive passengers can book a flight. Whether they want to take a one-way trip or a return flight, they will be able to find a flight and book a seat at short notice.

With the help of apps from different airlines, not having to wait ages or spend endless hours finding a last-minute journey will be incredibly convenient. So-called “empty leg flights” are where the departure airport, destination and flight times are already in place.

Provided by Vistajet Direct, empty leg flights are useful for any executive who has an urgent meeting coming up but doesn’t have the time to scour the web for a ticket and is willing to be flexible about when they depart.


Before boarding a flight, it has become common for passengers to spend more time than necessary queuing at the check-in desk to have their tickets verified. This will no longer be
the case at airports all over the world. Automated check-in points will save time and leave passengers more time to spend at the airport’s bars and shops pre-flight.

>See also: Travelling smart: the future of transportation

Speaking of automation, before executive passengers take off, they can get whatever information they need on travel times and any expected delays through social media. An increasing number of companies use Facebook Messenger to let passengers book tickets, check flight paths and even customise parts of their in-flight experience. Expect all major airlines to go down this route in future.

Avatar photo

Nick Ismail

Nick Ismail is a former editor for Information Age (from 2018 to 2022) before moving on to become Global Head of Brand Journalism at HCLTech. He has a particular interest in smart technologies, AI and...

Related Topics