Every sector of our economy has been affected by the COVID-19 crisis. One of the more visible industries has been airlines and airports. As airlines and airports start to return to normal — or at least a new normal — effective communication with employees and travelers will be the key to success.
According to the Transportation Security Administration, on March 1, 2020, about 2.3 million passengers passed through security checkpoints at airports. In April, those numbers dwindled into the 90,000 passenger range. Slowly, those numbers have rebounded from the April lows. On July 13, 2020, nearly 698,000 travelers passed through security. Far more than in April, but far fewer than the 2.6 million who did the same on July 13, 2019.
Hits to worldwide tourism took a large chunk of that traffic away, but business travel was particularly affected. Conventions and in-person meetings were canceled across the globe, and businesses found that online communications and video meetings were convenient and safe. Regroup Mass Notification serves companies, municipalities, airports, airlines and more to ensure that employees and members of the community receive communications on any device.
The “New Normal” in Travel
One thing that’s clear about traveling during a pandemic: rules vary. Some flights are canceled and merged with others to increase capacity. Others are purposefully left at low capacity (for example, leaving all middle seats empty.) Some terminals and concourses are requiring masks, others are not. And recently, the State of New York enacted new laws requiring some inbound travelers to quarantine for 14 days. How to navigate that environment as travelers, pilots and flight attendants return to the skies requires skillful messaging. With mass notifications, airlines and airports can easily:
- Use geofencing technology, which Regroup uses, to inform everyone in a terminal or airport that masks are required, or any other protocol the airport is following.
- Inform passengers about cancelled or merged flights and gate changes.
- Fill last-minute shifts on airplanes or at the airport with SMS/text messages, email, push notifications or automated phone calls.
- Alert all stakeholders if there is a safety concern in the area, including human threats or environmental hazards.
- Let travelers know which parking areas have spaces available, and conversely, which may have been closed due to reduced capacity.
- Bolster business at the concessions by letting travelers know which restaurants, bars and other businesses are open.
- Let travelers know which hotels are open near the airport in case they are delayed and need a last-minute place to stay.
Other considerations: Concessions, including restaurants, account for a healthy portion of airport income. Many closed because of the decline in travel, and others opened in a reduced capacity manner. Regroup’s mass notifications platform makes it simple to text, call and email staffers, vendors, and paper and food suppliers to ensure that businesses can reopen as smoothly as possible.
Travel looks different today, but it’s still a round-the-clock operation. Airports,airlines and others in the travel industry can rely on a platform like Regroup’s that has 24/7 customer support and over a decade of experience with helping organizations communicate better and keep people safer.
To learn more about Regroup or see our platform in action, schedule a demo today.