James Morris - Sep 4, 2007

By June next year, the airline industry shall do its bit for the environment, itself and its customers by making one very simple step: disposing of the paper ticket system. Most passengers tend to keep hold of their paper tickets as souvenirs after some dream holiday or once-in-a-lifetime trip. However, as next year shall see the introduction of the electronic ticketing system, the paper ticket is set to become a collector’s item.


The Chinese are expected to be the first nation to have only the electronic tickets and completely get rid of paper tickets. This is not mere speculation, as the Geneva-based global airlines body, IATA, has announced that it has recently placed its very last order for paper tickets. The body is responsible for 94% of flights around the world, making it the most significant body in the airline industry as a whole.


The change in the system of ticketing has been met by applause from both economists and environmentalists. By issuing electronic tickets, airline companies are expected to save an astonishing 50 000 mature trees per year. Similarly, they will save $ 9 per ticket per passenger. It has not yet been confirmed whether the passenger or the company shall benefit from this saving, yet either way it makes a significant difference. There is another factor to be considered. This is that electronic tickets are far less likely to be destroyed, bent or damaged, resulting in a higher level of customer satisfaction and a lower level of complaints and claims for compensation. The new system, whichever way one looks at it has fundamental benefits for absolutely everybody involved, unless one is a paper ticket enthusiast of course.


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