Air New Zealand has been using wearable devices to track unaccompanied children on single and multi-sector flights, and plans to roll out the service for free until next February.
The AirBand wearable, which is offered at check-in on domestic and international routes, contains a chip that is scanned “at key stages of the journey to trigger text notifications to up to five nominated contacts”. The wearable is compulsory for children travelling alone aged between 5 and 11, but optional for those up to 16 years of age.
The new service is being offered on a complimentary basis through until 3 February 2016. Bookings made from this date will incur a fee of NZ$15 per child for each one-way domestic journey, or $40 per child for each one-way international journey applies.
Air New Zealand general manager customer experience, Carrie Hurihanganui, said that Airband is a great example of the airline investing in technology to enhance the customer experience.
“We know that having your child travel on their own can be a nervous time for both children and their guardians. While our staff have always taken great care of children travelling solo, we identified that there was an opportunity to enhance the experience for kids while at the same time giving caregivers further peace of mind and visibility of their journey,” says Ms Hurihanganui.
“We believe this is the first time this type of technology has been used by an airline anywhere in the world for the purpose of providing caregivers greater peace of mind when their child is travelling alone. We have been trialling it across our network over recent months and the feedback from parents and guardians has been very positive with many welcoming the additional reassurance of knowing where in the journey their child is.”