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More travelers use British Airways e-services
Published in Daily News Egypt on 17 - 03 - 2008


CAIRO: British Airways has confirmed an increase in the use of its e-services in Egypt ahead of the opening of its new home at Heathrow, Terminal 5, later this month, according to a press statement.Recently released British Airways statistics for January 2008 detail the use of e-services in the region and Egypt. It showed a 35 percent increase in online sales over 2007. The increasing adoption of e-ticketing in the region follows the overall global pattern ahead of the June 1, 2008 International Air Transport Association (IATA) cut off date for paper tickets.The range of British Airways e-services now on offer are proving popular, with the website being visited by more than 2.5 million customers every week. Online ticket sales at ba.com are on the up and 87 percent of all current journeys on British Airways flights are by passengers using an e-ticket (an increase from 40 percent in 2003). E-tickets can now be used on almost all British Airways routes and also for routes covered by interline e-ticket agreements with another 45 airlines. British Airways has devoted considerable resources to the "Manage my Booking section of the ba.com, which allows travelers to check the exact details of their travel plans, change their bookings if traveling on a flexible ticket, or e-mail their itineraries to friends or business colleagues. The facility can be used anywhere in the world regardless of whether the ticket has been booked online, via a call centre, or with a travel agent.The system offers additional facilities such as viewing accurate arrivals and departures information, entering Advanced Passenger Information (API) before traveling to the United States, advising dietary requirements, and adding executive or frequent flyer numbers. Hotels, cars and insurance can also be booked through the site.Online check-in is available up to 24 hours before flight departure, in which customers can check in and use an interactive seat map of the aircraft to pick or change their seats. Egyptians have been quick to recognize the benefits of checking in online, such as avoiding queues at airports, and this is highlighted by a 65 percent increase in use of this service. British Airways was the first UK airline to introduce online boarding passes and now 13 percent of British Airways passengers in Egypt are printing their boarding passes in the convenience of their homes, offices or hotels before departing for the airport. It is estimated that around 80 percent of all passengers departing via Terminal 5 will check in online or at the many automated check-in facilities on offer, with travel through the terminal further facilitated by the ability to drop hold luggage at one of over 100 fast bag drop desks, all linked directly into a baggage handling system capable of processing 12,000 bags per hour.Exclusively serving British Airways flights, Terminal 5 will open to regular services on March 27.

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