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Etihad on course to hit e-ticket deadline

Etihad Airways insists it is on course to replace paper tickets with e-tickets by start of June

The Abu Dhabi-based airline says it already offers e-ticketing, an electronic alternative for online bookings, across 93% of its network.

Its management is confident the remaining 7% will be converted before June, the International Air Transport Association's deadline for changing to e-ticketing.

"Etihad has fully embraced the introduction and implementation of e-ticketing and we are very proud that the airline will comfortably meet the IATA deadline," said Peter Baumgartner, Etihad's executive vice president marketing and product.

"There are many benefits with e-ticketing both in terms of security of the document, information contained within it and the impact on the environment by not printing paper tickets."

According to Baumgartner, e-tickets also allow passengers to make late changes to bookings, avoid visiting airline sales office and secure seats over the phone.

Elsewhere, check-in is easier with travellers presenting their passport and e-ticket numbers before receiving boarding passes.

Etihad first introduced e-tickets in July 2006 to comply with IATA's changeover strategy. It has agreements with 45 international carriers, enabling passengers to fly with Etihad and partner airlines using one e-ticket.

The e-ticketing initiative was established two years earlier as part of IATA's "simplifying the business" strategy, which is designed to make travel more convenient and cost effective.

The destinations for which Etihad still issues paper tickets are Peshawar, Tehran and Khartoum.

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