Passengers flying with Corendon Dutch Airlines, a subsidiary of Corendon Tourism Group, can now order food, beverages and duty-free products from the in-flight Corendon Café using their personal electronic devices and have the items delivered directly to their seat.
Following a successful trial in January, the in-seat ordering functionality is set to be operational across the carrier’s fleet of three Boeing 737-800 aircraft by the end of the month and complements Corendon Dutch Airlines’ continuing trolley service. It was developed together with the airline’s long-term partner, AirFi, to enhance the passenger experience, reduce waste and optimize revenue opportunities.
“Since COVID-19 began, passengers have been asked not to walk about the cabin, and since childhood, most of us were taught not to press the flight attendant call button unless absolutely necessary. This is very courteous, but not ideal if the passenger really would like to buy some duty free or have a refreshment,” said Gert-Jan de Vries, manager, Cabin Crew & In-Flight Sales at Corendon Dutch Airlines.
“With AirFi’s in-seat ordering, we provide a more discreet way for our guests to request what they want, when they want it. The result is that our guests are more content during the flight, and as an airline we earn additional revenue that might have otherwise been lost,” he continued.
To access the service, passengers must connect to Corendon Dutch Airlines’ wireless in-flight entertainment and shopping platform, also powered by AirFi, by selecting the appropriate in-flight Wi-Fi network. Once they place an order, cabin crew are notified via their tablets and can mark the request as “in progress” or “complete” for other crew members to see. When the order is ready, a flight attendant will deliver the items to the passenger and take payment.
The crew is also able to monitor stock levels and mark products as “out of stock” when they become unavailable. Furthermore, Corendon Dutch Airlines is currently testing optimized stock-loading using data from AirFi’s Electronic Point of Sale solution to help drive down operational costs without compromising sales opportunities.
Items available via the Corendon Café include snacks and drinks alongside warm meals like soup and pizza and regional favorites such as Stroopwafels and Broodje kroket – a Dutch sandwich consisting of a deep-fried croquette inside a soft bread roll or a bun.
Job Heimerikx, AirFi’s CEO, commented, “Corendon has been a partner of AirFi for many years and we’re incredibly excited to announce that they’re the first European airline to adopt our ground-breaking in-seat ordering capabilities. By offering hybrid service that begins with the traditional trolley service then switches to in-seat ordering, Corendon is truly maximizing the potential of its onboard retail programme.”
In November 2020, AirFi launched in-seat ordering onboard Singapore-based low-cost carrier Scoot. The initiative facilitated a shift from printed menus and in-flight magazines at each seat to a fully digital solution, saving the airline 156 tonnes of paper annually.