Qantas domestic passengers who check-in using an iPhone will be able to store their boarding passes on their phone if they have the Passbook app.
We knew Qantas was considering the use of the iPhone's Passbook feature, and suddenly it's here.
The airline announced yesterday that with immediate effect, domestic passengers who check-in using an iPhone will be able to store their boarding passes in their handsets' Passbook app. Passengers click the 'Add to Passbook' button during the mobile check-in process.
The Passbook boarding passes are colour-coded to reflect the traveller's Frequent Flyer membership tier.
Qantas chose to support Passbook because the vast majority of its passengers that use mobile check-in do so from iPhones.
The system will help reduce congestion at airports, predicted Samantha Taranto, executive manager domestic customer experience.
Passbook, a feature of iOS 6, is designed to reduce the number of pieces of paper and plastic - tickets, loyalty cards, and so on - that people need to carry with them.
A useful feature of Passbook is that it makes provision for time and location-awareness. So when a person visits a cafe the appropriate loyalty card can appear on the iPhone's lock screen automatically.
Or when a traveller fronts up at the airport ahead of boarding time, the boarding pass can appear without intervention.
Qantas plans to take advantage of this capability from late January 2013, but in any case documents stored in Passbook can be opened manually.
Alongside location awareness, Qantas will support live updates so boarding passes can reflect any changes that occur after check-in, such as delays to boarding time,
Other airlines supporting Passbook include American Airlines, Delta, United, and Virgin Australia.