Security, Loyalty Programs and the End of Overbooking: How Blockchain Could Help Airlines

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Airlines and airports are functioning on outdated methods of information collection and distribution, using many isolated operating systems where data exchange can be timely and unsecure — despite a reported 170 percent increase in the past 20 years of U.S. outbound trips abroad.

Major competitors have recognized how the characteristics of the aviation industry align with blockchain, which has the potential to streamline data sharing among information silos in airports — and with ancillary travel enterprises more broadly — to create a seamless and secure travel experience.

Lufthansa Industry Solutions, a subsidiary of the largest airline in Europe, launched the initiativeBlockchain for Aviation (BC4A) in an effort to compile potential applications of the technology and create industry standards for its use. Air New Zealand, Lufthansa, Eurowings, Austrian Airlines and Brussels Airlines have partnered with the Swiss-based non-profit Winding Tree, which is using blockchain to power a decentralized travel distribution network to make travel more cost effective