Airports to invest $6 billion in IT in 2013

SITA IT Trends Survey says airports will spend $6 billion on IT.
Airports IT spend is on the rise
Airports IT spend is on the rise

The 2013 SITA/ACI/Airline Business Airport IT Trends Survey says that airports are increasing their spend on IT to $6 billion in 2013.

The tenth edition of the report highlights continued growth in IT spending, with 90 percent of the 255 airports surveyed expecting budgets to either increase or remain stable in 2014.

The top priority for airport IT spending will be focused on passenger processing technology as well as improving passenger services and information.

By 2016, approximately 95% of airports plan to invest in mobile apps to provide status information on flights and the airport, and to help passengers navigate through the airport. In addition, 75% of airports will offer passenger services via social media by 2016, up from 56% today. And by 2016, passengers can expect to see baggage self-service go mainstream, with more than 80% of airports around the world providing bag tag printing and assisted bag drop.

The report claims that business intelligence will play a greater role in airport operations and customer experience, with 80 percent of airports planning to invest in BI software tools by 2016. Use of BI tools will be focused on improving airport operations, passenger flow monitoring and airport resource management.

The report notes however that many airports face challenges in achieving their BI aims, with only eight percent of respondents having achieved data quality requirements for current BI initiatives.

Francesco Violante, chief executive officer, SITA, commented: “Airports continue to invest in information technology to improve their operations and services.

“Our survey this year clearly shows that passengers are at the heart of this investment. As passenger traffic grows and airports aim to improve the passenger experience, technology is providing essential solutions, despite fluctuations in airport revenues.”

The survey is based on responses from participants representing more than 255 airports globally, covers airports from all major regions of the world and represents 54% of global passenger traffic.