United Airlines is partnering with PayPal to make in-flight purchases touch-free even if no Wi-Fi is available, World Airline News reported Wednesday (Oct. 6).
Starting in November, United customers on some flights can show a flight attendant a PayPal QR code and use it to buy snacks and other items, according to the report.
“PayPal QR codes can be used on select flights departing from Chicago O’ Hare International Airport in November, and before the end of the year, will extend to all flights across the entire network where contactless payment is available,” the report stated.
United is the first airline to offer PayPal QR codes as part of its of contactless payment tools, according to the report. The airline was also the first to offer economy passengers the ability to pre-order snacks and drinks from the United app and website. Customers can also store their payment information in a digital wallet.
Enhanced meal options were also rolled out to people in domestic premium cabins on flights over 1,500 miles and hub-to-hub flights over 800 miles, the report stated.
Last year was among the worst the airline industry ever experienced, losing more than $35 billion as the pandemic lockdowns grounded most flights. Although this year was expected to bring in more revenue, the delta variant made the recovery shaky.
In May, United began a campaign to get people flying again. CEO Scott Kirby said at the time that the dual-pronged promo, called “Your Shot to Fly,” was aimed at getting people vaccinated, while also encouraging them to dream about exotic destinations with the chance of winning free travel for a year.