Qantas moves to digital boarding passes for international flights

By David Flynn, May 18 2017

Qantas plans to do away with paper boarding passes for international flights, with switched-on travellers being given the option to use a digital boarding pass in the Qantas app.

Near-paperless boarding is already a standard on domestic Qantas flights thanks to mobile check-in, tap-and-go smartcard readers (which are being phased out) and the Qantas smartphone app.

App-based boarding passes will be introduced on flights between Australia and New Zealand next month in what the airline is touting as more seamless trans-Tasman travel.

Qantas plans to extend this to other international destinations, eventually allowing passengers without checked luggage to use the Qantas App to bypass the checkin counter and head straight to immigration and security, and then make a beeline for the lounge (or boarding gate, if they're running late).

Eligible travellers will also find their digital boarding pass includes access to the airport's Express Path fast-track.

“Seamless domestic travel has been a reality since Qantas pioneered smart check-in technology in 2010, but the barriers have always been a lot higher for international flights," says Qantas International CEO Garett Evans.

“The goal is ultimately to make this technology for international routes the ‘new normal’. Helping our customers access services and information through their mobile is a big priority for Qantas right now."

David

David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 May 2017

Total posts 17

Does Qantas plan to do away with paper boarding passes altogether.?     What happens if you are not traveling with a mobile, or the mobile phone plays up just when you need it.... Or will we now have to pay a fee to have a paper boarding pass.?    Most people may want to use their mobile, but that does not mean all.   They still should offer paper passes to those who want it, or need it.

23 Sep 2015

Total posts 45

I recently had the situation where I had my boarding pass as an e-ticket and my phone was rapidly running out of battery and would have died before the flight was called. I'd already gone through security so I just went to the enquiries counter and they happily printed one out for me. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Mar 2017

Total posts 26

Let's not be too dramatic, it's an easily solution to just print one out. Most arrival immigration services requirer a paper boarding pass anyways (i.e. US, Canada, UK). In order to alleviate this would take far more international cooperation and if that day should come, there would be contingency plans. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

23 Oct 2013

Total posts 714

On a recent flight I took, Jetstar made an announcement around 5 minutes before boarding and said that if anyone is using a mobile boarding pass and their phone has died/low battery could they approach the gate staff for a printed boarding pass before boarding.
But then Qantas will print you out a bit of paper with the boarding pass details when you board anyway. Wonder if those can be removed?

Qantas

19 Apr 2012

Total posts 408

Papery the bit of paper is required if you need to provide evidence of actual travel.

Air New Zealand - Airpoints

10 Aug 2015

Total posts 79

This is a good move! I seem to have misplaced a Few paper tickets between check in and the gate. Interesting the express path will come up also. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

23 Oct 2013

Total posts 714

I'm not sure how other Australian airports handle it, but in Brisbane, after you go through departures smart gate you put your departure card into a box.

I've twice seen people drop their boarding pass into that box as well. First time it took immigration a while to find a key for the box.

Qantas

22 Oct 2012

Total posts 263

Yet when one needs to Claim Missing Points on the QF website the first requirement is to send them a copy of the Boarding Pass.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

19 May 2017

Total posts 5

I submitted a missing points claim just the other day and don't recall any boarding pass requirement? What details are you referring to?
Good move quantas going paperless. However, in saying this, there should also be an option for the older people or people with no phone to access paper boarding passes at the check-in area, otherwise, this option would seem insensitive to those not familiar or who do not own a mobile phone.  I like paperless from start to finish, It's where we're headed in the future, no people, just machines and scanning and who knows, in the future the plane may even be auto-piloted???

QANTAS

12 Jun 2014

Total posts 23

I don't think paper boarding passes are going away any time soon.

Planes already have autopilot features but you need someone behind the controls at all times. I can't see that changing even as autopilot technology improves.
sgb
sgb

Emirates Airlines - Skywards

30 Nov 2015

Total posts 745

In the future, airports might have molecular transportation booths instead, and be called Teleport instead of just old fashioned Airport. Mobile phones will then be as old fashioned as paper boarding passes.
undertheradar Banned
undertheradar Banned

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 662

CHILL OUT PEOPLES. IT'S JUST AN OPTION.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

29 Nov 2013

Total posts 457

UTR - in case you didn't realise, your caps lock is on...

#justsayin

undertheradar Banned
undertheradar Banned

28 Oct 2011

Total posts 662

I am fully aware

#justsayin

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

30 Mar 2017

Total posts 1

Garett Evans? Always thought it was Gareth...

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

13 Jan 2017

Total posts 71

Hey Eunice - there's no U in Qantas.

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