Ancillaries are the fastest-growing revenue stream for airlines. There’s no end to what they can up-sell or cross-sell after seats. Moreover, IATA’s New Distribution Capabilities (NDC) is ushering in an era of how airlines will sell them. videc’s App in the Sky examines Android apps of 66 airlines worldwide to see how many offer the below unbundled products.


At 72%, this is the most-offered ancillary product by airlines in 2Q19. If late-to-arrive and first-to-board is the line that fliers want to take, then airlines are rolling out the red carpet to deliver this option at a fee. Offering this via their app allows users who are not part of their high-value frequent flier program to buy this.

Base: 65 airlines | View Methodology


Most seat selection purchases happen at the time of booking. Most airlines offer this on their app, which is an indication of how pervasive and popular this option is among fliers. This 2Q19 study shows that 61% of the airlines studied offer the preferred seat selection.

Base: 65 airlines | View Methodology


This ranks third in the overall scheme of ancillary products that airlines sell via their mobile apps. Often times, the extra luggage allowance purchase happens over-the-counter while checking-in. So if airlines want users to utilize this app this – on the app itself.

Base: 65 airlines | View Methodology


It is surprising that only 39% of the airlines in 2Q19 offer this feature in their shopping flow within their apps. But again, this could be because of higher ratio of full-service carriers versus low-cost carriers. The former typically includes meals in its bundled fare rather than upselling. In case of LCCs, meals purchase also happens either post-booking or directly on the flight. Airlines have done rather little to upsell meals via this channel.

Base: 65 airlines | View Methodology


This statistic should match or at least be close to that of priority check-in but we see a huge gap in between. This is probably because the first option is more popular with business travellers who don’t have luggage to check in. Only 30% of the airlines studied in 2Q19 offer this service.

Base: 65 airlines | View Methodology


Even though flight disruption poses a significant threat to airline operations and expense line – particularly in Europe, which has stringent Air Passenger Rights – not many airlines offer this. Overall, airlines have some more ways to go in integrating travel insurance in their mobile shopping path.

Base: 65 airlines | View Methodology


Airlines are either retailing onboard or tying up with partners on the ground, especially at the airports. But a few are taking e-retail a step further and are incorporating shopping within their apps. Think of it as Amazon or Etsy baked within the airline apps, but at a limited scale. The retail opportunity is vast and those doing it right stand a chance to gain an further insight into their travelers’ lifestyle.

Base: 65 airlines | View Methodology


Wi-Fi passes haven’t reached mainstream due to a combination of factors. Chief among them are massive capital expenditure on part the airline, and varying telecom regulations by country in case of overseas flights. Just 8% of the airlines offering Wi-Fi purchase in 2Q19 is surprising but its fast quarter-on-quarter growth gives this service hope. From a miniscule 3% in 1Q19, this more than doubled which is a sign that more airlines need to join in to not just make this a more popular service but also to make the rates more competitive.

Base: 65 airlines | View Methodology


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