The Importance of Inflight Services Demand Forecasting

You may wonder what demand forecasting is and how demand forecasting overcomes the planning challenges of the modern airline. The business need for the aviation industry to aggregate scattered data sources to better capture future demand, both short- and long-term, may now be more urgent than ever. New and volatile passenger and supply-demand patterns have increased the need for qualitative and quantitative data and expertise to understand the market better and create more accurate demand forecasts.

By recognizing and reacting to patterns quickly, you can plan your operations more efficiently for you and your customers’ benefit. Companies with accurate sales forecasts can effectively plan their supply, staffing, budget, and financial future. With accurate sales forecasts, businesses can develop cost-effective inflight services plans that increase supply when the time is right.

As the number of variables that impact competitive performance and punctuality of an air network continues to grow each year, accurate travel demand forecasts are becoming ever more complex to build. For example, access to accurate and timely weather forecasts and route information is critical for those planning inflight services. From the moment an aircraft pulls out from a gate to the moment it arrives at its destination, that day’s environment can significantly impact a flight, both economically and logistically, especially for commercial airlines.

Knowing all the conditions affecting a flight at the points of departure, arrival, and even along the route is essential for the aviation industry. The biggest hurdle facing the aviation industry right now is that static, frequently manual-based models they previously depended on to predict demand will no longer work.

Since aviation will forever be a dynamic and turbulent industry, forecasting inventory, crew, passenger counts, and air traffic in a changing environment using pooled data allows companies to obtain the most accurate forecasts. A current demand forecast solution, designed to scan and recognize patterns across vast datasets, is essential to the success of inflight services fulfillment and operations, as responses to quickly moving external factors highly impact business outcomes. Managers must have historical and real-time information to make better decisions, which can be obtained from demand forecasts.

Demand forecasting is critical to all airlines, enabling you to make informed business decisions and develop real-time, data-driven strategies for inflight services. Dynamic forecasting allows airlines to make optimized resource allocation decisions, recognize the need for corrective action, and adapt current strategies to meet any new contingency.