Manila, 18 January 2022 - Filipino travelers - as the world continues to adapt and live with COVID-19 - are looking for safer ways to travel, making contactless solutions indispensable in their travel experience.
A survey commissioned by AirAsia Philippines last December 2021 - with 1,605 respondents aged 18 to 60 years old from Metro Manila, balanced Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao - revealed that 62% of Filipinos traveling in the next 180 days have contactless travel touchpoints as among their prime concerns, followed by value for money and better flight timing. Included in the points of contact they hope will be digitized are passenger boarding and booking process.
In compliance with the Department of Transportation Order 2022-01, fully vaccinated AirAsia guests flying out of Manila hub are required to present a physical or digital copy of their COVID-19 vaccination records.
For seamless travel, guests may now upload their vaccination cards via airasia Super App which is linked to the Department of Health's (DOH) VaxCert PH. The one-time uploading of this document will form part of the guest's personal database which can be used for his/her future travels.
AirAsia Philippines Chief Executive Officer Ricky Isla said, "AirAsia is among the first airlines in the Philippines to embrace digitalization. We aimed at making the travel experience frictionless, ridding the need for long queues in counters and face-to-face interactions, consequently ensuring guest safety. Processes like document verification and flight check-ins, for instance, can be done at least 24 hours prior to departure through the airasia Super App, hence enabling a simpler and more convenient travel experience. At AirAsia, guests can enjoy various options that make traveling in the new normal easier and safer,"
Since the onset of the global pandemic, AirAsia Philippines has fortified its partnership with the country's top e-wallet solutions, GCash and PayMaya, to broaden its array of convenient and secure payment options as guests prefer to limit their face-to-face transactions. The recent survey revealed that this pivot to contactless solutions is in agreement with current traveling behavior as 31% of the travelers said they use mobile e-wallets in purchasing their tickets. 29% meanwhile said they use their credit cards, while 18% use other forms of mobile and internet banking. The survey added that for the travelers, using non-contact payments helps promote a convenient and time saving, more secure and safe transaction. Only 6% said they will pay cash while 2% still preferred over the counter payments.
Guests who book their tickets online also preferred to access the airline's website via their mobile phones (43%) and their laptop or computer (37%). Another 27% said they will also use the airline's mobile app if available.
AirAsia offers flexibility for all of its guests traveling during the pandemic, providing unlimited move flight options until 26 March 2022, and waiving charge fees for those affected with flight disruptions. Guests with uncertain travel plans may also opt to convert bookings into credit accounts which can all be done through the Super App.
"Contactless solution is the new and better way to travel. AirAsia will never stop finding ways to simplify air travel during these times. We will continue with our digitization and move forward with it while continuing to promote health and safety in all of our flights," Isla added.
The airline is expected to launch the world's first facial recognition technology for contactless check-in procedure FACES in Q2 or Q3 2022. This facial recognition service, which is available via Super App, is expected to add another layer of health and safety protection for AirAsia guests as the app would only require them to tame a selfie, upload a copy of their passport or national ID and go through a 1-time verification process at the check-in counter.