The Hawaiian Airlines app: Your travel escort to paradise
Hawaiian Airlines and ArcTouch collaborated on an app for Android and iOS, designed to alleviate day-of-travel stress and help people on their journey to paradise.
The app helps passengers check in quickly and avoid ticket lines. Digital boarding passes are easily accessible, even when offline.
Real-time flight updates
Passengers receive notifications of any changes in the flight status — i.e. gate changes or delays.
A travel escort to paradise
The app features turn-by-turn walking directions to the gate and baggage claim, along with real-time chat with customer service.
“Working with ArcTouch, we rigorously focused on improving the day-of-travel experience. I’m incredibly proud of how we executed on that vision.”
— Jason Ross, Hawaiian Airlines’ manager of online and mobile experience
For most consumers, air travel is stressful. In fact, an Airlines for America survey found that only 35% of travelers said they were very satisfied. In particular, the survey found that long ticketing and security lines cause anxiety. And a 2018 survey from Skift revealed that many flyers simply want better information to improve the travel experience, with 54% of respondents asking for real-time, accurate travel notifications.
The Hawaiian Airlines and ArcTouch teams wanted to create an app to help travelers alleviate day-of-travel stress, and escort them to their final destination: paradise.
Besides delivering great new features, the teams knew the app had to deliver something even more fundamental: great technical performance. When the project started in 2017, the legacy web-based Hawaiian Airlines app — which had 1-star reviews on both Google Play and Apple’s App store — was not living up to Hawaiian’s remarkable brand as a premier airline.
The teams rigorously focused on delivering an app feature set that solved two important problems:
- Reducing the stress and wait times during the check-in process
- Using real-time updates to usher people from check-in to their final destination
Those features include flight check-in, real-time flight updates, chat with customer service, and digital maps and walking directions in airports. The app also includes in-flight entertainment, allowing passengers to ease into their vacation, and put aside any lingering air travel stress by escaping with movies or music on their own device (for flights that support it).
To build the app, our development teams chose Xamarin. In so doing, the ArcTouch Xamarin developers were able to efficiently design and build the cross-platform application, leveraging common code and features across Android and iOS, yet still delivering native app experiences. Another reason we chose Xamarin is that Hawaiian Airlines leverages Microsoft enterprise services across the organization -- and the company’s in-house development team has deep experience with Microsoft’s technology stack. So, the Hawaiian Airlines team will be able to efficiently manage the application with Xamarin over the course of its lifecycle.
The app has delivered dramatic improvements in app store ratings for both iOS (now at 3.5 stars) and Android (now at 4.0 stars). And more importantly, the day of travel mobile experience is more in-line with the premium travel experience guests expect from Hawaiian Airlines.
To learn more about the project, visit our blog post,
“From argh to ahhh… Introducing the new Hawaiian Airlines app.”