Spanish carrier, Clickair, says it will become the first airline in the world to eliminate check-in.
The news came as Clickair delivered a robust analysis of its recent ” and rapid - growth at the Institute of Economic Affairs Low Cost Transport Summit in London today (13 June).
Speaking to ABTN, Clickair chief executive, Alex Cruz, said: ”We will eliminate check-in and have secured permission from the Spanish authorities, as well as enabling it from Heathrow and Gatwick from 25 June.”
Cruz declined to be drawn on precisely how the new system would operate, but did reveal that the system would be known as ”Click & Fly.” Full details will be unveiled on 25 June.
”We have looked at the security situation and our system will be completely innovative,” said Cruz, adding: ”Today, every airline in the world requires a check-in and we are saying why?”
Initially, the system will be for hand baggage only, clearly appealing to the business traveller ” of which the airline is carrying increasing numbers. Witness Cruz”s revelation also that the carrier would introduce assigned seating. ”We are responding to business passengers who don”t want to scramble for their seats,” he noted.
Mobile phones are increasingly being developed to allow passengers more freedom at check-in, but Cruz emphatically denied that Clickair would use that particular technology.
”Don”t expect us to come with mobile phone solutions, but we will introduce [our system] on all flights departing Spain and we will be the first,” he said.
And the chief executive warned of ”bloody battles” this summer as European capacity continued to grow, although he remained bullish that Clickair”s load factor would see full aircraft.
”Spain is a fantastic market and we continue to be extremely active,” he said, adding: ”while we have increasing numbers of inbound Eastern Europeans coming in.
”There are more seats than passengers for 2008/09 and some people won”t make it. Perhaps some will become charter operators or there may be consolidation, but we may expand our model beyond Spain to the rest of Europe.”