Air travel can be a very pleasant experience for some or a little intimidating to others. However, when you make a long flight many would like to have the possibility of having travel companions that will not interfere with the tranquility that you want to have on board. Dutch airline KLM has developed a program called “Meet & Seat” that allows travelers to upload details of their Facebook or LinkedIn profiles and use the data to choose seatmates or to identify if someone you know is in the same flight.
Meet & Seat is available for: bookings with one passenger, KLM flights to and from Amsterdam, and from 90 days until 1 hour before departure (after that, you will not be able to view other passengers’ profile details or where they will be sitting). KLM is still working on making it available for more of its flights.
Now that Facebook claims to have nearly 500 million active users (more than 60 times the eight million people who fly every day), KLM and other airlines are sure that many of them would be willing to share their profiles in exchange for the opportunity to meet someone with a common interest or you could head to the same destination.
- On KLM.com, log in to My Trip or check in (from 30 hours before departure) and go to the seat map.
- Log in to your Facebook or LinkedIn account.
- Select the profile details you want to share with other passengers and add your travel details.
Then the seat map will show:
- Further details of the passenger profile participants, regardless of social network are using.
- Row and seat number chosen.
- The availability of seats: you can choose a seat, for example, next to someone with similar interests – and change the selection and start over.
KLM service is only available for passengers with confirmed reservations. After selecting the amount of personal information they want to share, passengers are presented with seat maps that show where they are sitting others who have shared their profiles. Then we can reserve the seat next to someone who looks interesting and that person will receive a message with the details of our profile.
This is a curious but effective social networking application serving aeronautical industry which safely provide new alternatives in the short term, because such strategies represent more customers happy and therefore more occupied seats on each flight.
Submitted by: Oscar Lopez – SMBP Student University of Waterloo
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