Creating a seamless payment experience for airline passengers

Airline payment solutions are often fragmented, with various systems in use across different touchpoints. For the customer, this means re-entering payment details over and over again – and when purchasing something small, the process may be too lengthy to be worth the trouble.

What if all your trip payments could be handled through a single easy-to-use method? What if your payment details were stored safely in one place, and purchasing add-on services took just one click?

Our Pay Everywhere concept for a universal digital payment experience for airlines is an unrivaled, accessible and personalized way to, well, pay everywhere. Enabling painless payments across the board not only improves the experience for passengers, it can also help unlock new potential revenue streams.

And as increasing numbers of aircraft are connected to the internet, they become an extension of the digital services already available on the ground. Here we have an opportunity: to bring the aircraft, a critical touchpoint in the customer journey, into the same ecosystem as the existing digital services. The same payment method can now extend across the whole journey – from the ground to air and back down again.


  • In any medium, physical or digital, payments are as easy as swiping your card
  • Saved payment methods are available for the user at all touchpoints
  • With a unified payment platform, enabling payments for new services is plug-and-play
  • New payment methods are instantly available on all services – no separate integration required
  • Aircraft connectivity brings the onboard systems online - also for payments

The Pay Everywhere concept

The Pay Everywhere concept makes paying for services easy: add your payment method once, and it is automatically available for use across the airline’s services. This means that digital teams can focus on creating world-class user experiences, without having to worry about re-designing single use-case payment services.

While we design for digital, we must also remember that physical payment methods (payment terminals) are also a part of the holistic service. Sometimes swiping a card or keying in your PIN code is the easiest, smoothest way to pay – and that’s ok. For the platform to be unified, it must also enable for example the cabin crew to accept payments by using a terminal.

Onboard, Amy orders a drink from the seat-back display and pays for it on her own smartphone. The crew delivers the drink to Amy’s seat.

Enabling rapid business and customer experience development

Across all touchpoints

Offers a single interface for paying for everything to do with your trip.

Set new industry standards

The Pay Everywhere platform is on-par or better than current mobile payment solutions.

Tie your services together

Seamless, unified experience for the passenger comes from integrating and creating smooth handovers between different services – it shouldn't feel like a separate system.

A branded wallet

Enable the airline app to be the passengers' personal wallet while traveling, across all services.

Sell new or underused services

The platform enables the effortless sale of new or underused services.

Binding the services together

In most cases, the first time the passenger types in their payment details is when booking flights. Any additional purchases like extra baggage or onboard shopping should feel like an extension of the first purchase: it should feel like “this is where I left off”.

Not only could your payment method be saved for use later, the platform would use your purchase history to only offer relevant extra services for you: If you already have a seat with extra leg-room booked, why have it offered to you over and over?


With Pay Everywhere, digital payments become as smooth as swiping a card through a reader.

Technology enables globally and locally relevant payment methods

The ubiquity of personalized data and connected personal digital devices is already simplifying payments. A lot of the tech giants are creating products like Apple Pay and Google Pay, and regional players, like banks in the Nordics and retailers in Asia, have also stepped up with offerings like MobilePay, Alipay and WeChat Pay – to name a few.

The challenge for airlines is to build a payment solution that enables passengers to use their preferred payment method, both in digital touchpoints and onboard the aircraft. A flexible payment solution approach makes it possible to provide both globally and locally relevant consumer interfaces for all payments.

With the Pay Everywhere platform, new services and touchpoints can easily be taken into use, with payments instantly enabled.

Adding new emerging payment methods, such as Apple Pay or Alipay is simply a matter of plugging in new components in the background. Once in use, they are automatically scaled to all touchpoints through the single payment interface, which is available for all services.

Changing or using new payment gateway providers, such as Adyen, Stripe or Braintree can be done in the background without affecting the overall user experience. Multiple payment providers can also be used in parallel, all handling selected payment methods – and using locally-relevant payment methods in selected markets.

Start small, scale up later

Creating a new payment platform may at first sound like a behemoth project, but it can – and should – be broken down into smaller increments. Start with one service and with the most-used payment methods that satisfy your current needs. Then expand to new services gradually and add new payment methods over time, one-by-one.

A good place to start is your smartphone application where passengers go through multiple transactions for buying flight extras. Payment details can simply be stored in the application, and mobile has the added advantage of being where the passengers’ everyday payment methods, such as Apple Pay are already available.

Start by creating value as early as possible for both the customers and the business. Aim for one universal digital payment experience – an accessible, personalized way to pay everywhere.

Powerful data for better services

Handling all payments through a unified platform makes it easier for airlines to follow the transaction flows and gathering passengers’ shopping behavior data, as all transactions go through one robust system rather than through several different service providers and fragmented payment systems.

Customers who value seamless digital experiences will gravitate towards those companies that can provide the same level of user experience as their everyday digital services. If you are in the game of creating industry-leading customer experiences, it’s time to start unifying your payment platform. Not only will it make for a more user-friendly experience, it also provides you with powerful data that you can use to create better-tailored services to your customer. 

We believe that the future is in digital, personalized and simple payments. 


Let's talk!

Konsta Hansson

Managing Director, Reaktor Aero

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