Posted by: jwtarr | November 25, 2008

High-Tech Travel: Paperless Boarding

The airlines have come a long way in terms of the ticket you eventually give to the gate attendant.  When I travel, I have become very used to checking in online and then printing out my boarding pass.  That printed boarding pass has a bar code on it and the attendant scans it and you’re on your way. 

But now, technology is changing and the newest way to board may be by having the attendant scan your cell phone.  Instead of printing out that boarding pass, you download it onto your cell phone in PDF format.  The attendant uses a hand held device to scan the bar code on the PDF document and you are good to go.  The TSA says this wave of the future will help cut down lines and will save paper/trees.

Continental Airlines started this kind of boarding about a year agoin conjunction with the TSA in Houston. 

More than 30,000 passengers have used the program.  And with the success of cell phone boarding passes, the airlines has expanded the program to eight different airports.  Now other airlines are in on it . . .

**The Airlines that are currently using paperless mobile boarding and where they are implementing it.

Alaska Airlines


American Airlines

-Chicago (O’Hare), LAX, Orange County

Continental Airlines

-Houston George Bush Intercontinental, Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Newark Liberty International Airport, Boston, Austin, San Antonio, Cleveland, LaGuardia Airport

Delta Airlines

-LaGuardia, Atlanta (soon)

Northwest Airlines

-Indianapolis International Airport and Detroit Metro Airport

**The TSA expects the program to be at every airport by the end of next year.



  1. […] hopes it will improve customer service, save paper, and make it easier to detect fake passes. Read Jason’s post for more […]

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