MIAMI – Smartphones have had a major impact on the air travel experience in the last few years, with brands like American Airlines (AA) for example choosing to launch apps that offer key information and even free in-flight entertainment to customers.

However, mobile devices have also had a transformative impact on payments recently and new reports have suggested that All Nippon Airways (ANA) is aiming to introduce a fresh way for its frequent flyer members to pay in the coming months.

Photo: Liam Funnell/Airways

ANA Pay on the way

Sites including Japan Today have reported that ANA is planning to introduce a QR code-based payments system by the end of the year.

Known as ANA Pay, the platform is being made in collaboration with credit card issuer JCB Co. It is hoped that it will let passengers make payments in a range of shops including supermarkets and drugstores.

According to Japan Today, the move will mean that frequent flyer members are able to earn miles through their daily shopping. It is anticipated that those who top up with a JCB card and make a payment will be able to receive six to 16 miles per 1,000 yen.

No exact date for ANA Pay’s launch was provided, but the move is undoubtedly an intriguing one that emphasises how cashless payment systems of all kinds are seemingly on the rise.

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

A Major Shift

The news about ANA Pay has come at a time when so many businesses across the board are seemingly shifting away from purely accepting cash and traditional cards.

There are of course multiple examples of this in aviation, with PayPal detailing how it is accepted by leading brands including Emirates, Singapore Airlines, British Airways, and United. The digital payments option is also accepted by companies in a host of other areas, from retailers in fashion and shoes to sports brands, electronics, and entertainment.

It is a similar story with Google Pay, which lists Ryanair among its featured apps and sites. The official site states that the service can also be used in the UK with retailers like Aldi and Boots, as well as eateries and food companies such as Costa and KFC. Prepaid options such as Paysafecard are doing well too, with its official site detailing how it can be used for activities including entertainment and gaming.

It is also popular in the world of online casinos, with this full post by outlining how a number of sites accept the payment method. It adds that many bonuses also tend to be available to those who use it, thus illustrating how much of an influential factor effective, safe online payment systems are on the gambling and entertainment industry.

Photo: Dirk Grothe

A Trend on the Rise

When all of this is considered, it seems that digital and cashless payment trends are really on the up in many sectors at the moment. As such, ANA’s plans to launch a smartphone payment service may not have come at a better time.

It will be intriguing to see how the service performs following the launch and whether it is ultimately embraced by its frequent flyer members. Furthermore, it will also be interesting to see how digital payment methods continue to have an impact on aviation in the years ahead.

Feature image: net workerz from Pixabay