New report details airline payment challenges

New report details airline payment challenges

150-plus global airline staff rank payment-related issues among top challenges

Disjointed approaches to payments result in operational inefficiencies and lost revenues for airlines, according to a study released by CellPoint Digital earlier this week.

The global provider of digital commerce and payment solutions released the ‘Payments Come of Age’ report which explores where airlines are struggling most with their current technology and systems and where they plan to invest in technology across their entire organisation.

Based on a survey of 151 airline professionals worldwide, the research pinpoints specific challenges, including the limited availability of alternative payment methods (APMs) and regional payment options.

Just 11% of surveyed airlines report being able to accept newer APMs like open banking and account-to-account payments. This limits their ability to expand and meet the payment expectations of travellers in markets like Southeast Asia, where APMs are increasingly used for travel purchases.

The report also reveals that airline professionals believe they need to improve prominent areas of the passenger experience, like boarding (44%), customer support (40%), and check-in (39%), to remain competitive in this challenging environment. Crew scheduling (28%) and in-flight operations (27%) were other areas cited as requiring improvement.

According to Kristian Gjerding, CEO of CellPoint Digital, payment efficiency is as crucial as expanding route networks when it comes to airlines' financial health.

“The evolution of payment processes towards Payment Orchestration proves that payments have come of age, unlocking profitability for airlines prepared to invest in innovation,” he said.

“By prioritising forward-looking payment strategies, airlines can deliver seamless booking and travel experiences for passengers, driving booking volume.”

Another part of the report explored region-specific airline payment dynamic. An example of this is LatAM, which has emerged as a critical market for many global carriers, transaction success and payment efficiency are necessary for airlines to capitalise on the region’s potential.

As the report shows, airlines serving Latin America are investing in instalment payment capabilities at a greater rate (35%) in 2025 than their European and Asian counterparts, responding to the demand for 'Buy Now, Pay Later' features in the LatAm market.

For more on the findings, visit