Air travelers are widely using self-check-in options and are impatient for further innovations that give them more control over the process, according to a new global survey by SITA, an air transport communications company. "While online booking and check-in are nearing their full potential," writes SITA, "there is now a clear demand from the travelling public for self-service on other steps of the passenger journey"--everything from do-it-yourself luggage tagging to automated security checks. Here, a slideshow of forward thinking air travel innovations that could satisfy the testiest airborne control freaks.

Currently, the biggest pain in air travel is the waiting. The best ideas address the lines and delays head-on.

In August, Delta became the first airline to offer flight booking directly through Facebook.
The SITA study revealed that two-thirds of customers would use kiosks to print bag tags.
Full body scanners have ignited debate recently over privacy. Last month it was reported that some would insert a "digital fig leaf" of sorts to obscure private parts.
According to the SITA survey, demand for automatic boarding gates like the one pictured here rose from 57% to 70% among respondents.
The real fun innovations happen on board. The constant upgrade in in-flight entertainment is one of the great reliefs of air travel; here a system allows users to customize a playlist. Even cooler might be this idea to transform your iPad itself into an in-flight entertainment system.
As in all things, many innovations are reserved for the wealthy. First class cabins continue to evolve to resemble the playrooms of the rich and famous. Last year, SWISS, for one, unveiled drool-worthy new designs.
First-class seating, meanwhile, continues to look more and more like a real bed.
One recent airline innovation has had a mixed reception, according to the recent study. For some reason, passengers in Asia and North America were considerably more likely to purchase carbon offsets than were passengers in Europe. Here, the site TerraPass lets you calculate the carbon footprint of a given flight.

The Future of the Airline Experience

Air travelers are widely using self-check-in options and are impatient for further innovations that give them more control over the process—from ticketing to baggage claim—according to a new global survey by SITA, an air transport communications company. Here, a slideshow of the future of air travel.

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