Self-service ticketing is taking off thanks to an emerging do-it-yourself purchasing mentality among customers. In order to facilitate speed and convenience, customers are opting to use self-service kiosks to pay for and receive tickets rather than traditional avenues like box offices, travel agencies or ticket windows.
For deployers, self-service ticketing removes much of the accounting, paperwork and administrative and financial burden of traditional ticket systems. Sales tracking and cash flow can be easily recorded and monitored using back-end kiosk software, eliminating human error. Using the same software, real-time updates of ticket prices, availability and specials can be easily entered and transmitted to all kiosks on the network. Also, staff that was previously used to man ticketing windows or contact centers can be replaced or reallocated to focus on other objectives.
Industries such as travel, transportation and entertainment have been the most popular outlets for automated ticketing, although many other stand to benefit. In these industries, where customer service is paramount, self-service ticketing greatly improves the buying experience by providing easy-to-use, convenient ways to purchase tickets. Ticketing kiosks can come in the form of a standalone unit, ATM, handheld device or POS terminals and offer credit card & cash acceptance options through unattended payment terminals and bill acceptors.
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In many transportation instances, unattended payment terminals can be used to read a customer’s credit card and retrieve their critical information from a previously booked trip. The kiosk can then issue or re-issue a ticket, boarding pass and/or receipt.
Certain airlines have also teamed up to provide Common Use Self-Service (CUSS) ticketing kiosks, which enable any customer to check-in at any kiosk regardless of the airline serving them, introducing convenience and consolidation. These kiosks are often located in the terminals or at nearby hotels and convention centers. Each participating airline reported improved check-in processing time and transaction costs reductions upon deployment. Additionally, CUSS has shown to reduce the need for queuing space and airport counter square footage requirements.
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