The Hub
Airline Retailing News
AR Payment.jpg
  • Programs & Initiatives
31 January 2024

Airline Payment - A Critical Enabler of Additional Value Creation in Retailing

In today’s competitive travel marketplace, delivering exceptional customer experiences is paramount. One critical aspect that significantly impacts customer satisfaction is payment. ​​​​​The industry vision of ​Modern Airline Retailing recognizes that payment methods are not just transactional tools - they are value enablers. By prioritizing flexibility and meeting passenger payment preferences, airlines can elevate the value creation potential of their commercial and retailing programs and consequently contribute to an enhanced customer experience at every touchpoint during booking and the actual journey. 

Let’s explore how payment plays a vital role in a successful airline retailing value creation:

  1. Customer centricity as the core strategy: Modern Airline Retailing revolves around customer centricity -- the ability to understand and meet passengers’ needs and desires. Providing the service customers want includes tailoring payment to their preferences. Airlines that prioritize customer-centric payment experiences build stronger relationships and encourage repeat business.
  2. ​​​​Frictionless transactions matter: a superior customer experience begins with seamless transactions. Passengers expect to buy tickets, ancillary services, and other add-ons seamlessly and through their preferred payment method at any touchpoint of their booking and actual journey. If customers encounter friction during payment, such as limited options or technical issues, frustration sets in and they may even abandon their air travel purchases altogether.
  3. Preferred payment methods drive additional conversions: passenger surveys reveal that clients who cannot find their preferred payment method are more likely to walk away from additional purchases. Offering a variety of payment options—credit cards, digital wallets, bank transfers, etc.—increases the likelihood of successful conversions. By accommodating diverse preferences, airlines can capture more revenue and enhance customer loyalty.


In summary, when airlines approach payment as a key ingredient of their retailing formula for success, the outcomes benefit both airlines and customers alike. Airlines reduce cart abandonment rates, increase ancillary revenue, and strengthen their brand reputation, while customers enjoy hassle-free payment experience, which enhances their overall satisfaction and loyalty.

Did you know? If you are an airline, there is an easy way to evaluate and gain visibility on your current Payment & Settlement drivers and value readiness, as well as the potential areas of growth. The IATA Airline Payment index has been designed for all airlines and assists them in measuring, planning, and assessing their payment & settlement foundations to start creating value and maximize future sales conversion, alongside retailing.

> Find out more and start your assessment

We use cookies to give you the best experience on our website. We also use cookies for advertising purposes. Please see our privacy policy and cookies policy for complete information.