Continental Airlines today announced it has completed the installation of
eService Center self-check-in kiosks in all of the airline`s airport
terminal check-in areas in the continental United States.
The last airport to receive Continental`s eService Center kiosks was Reno,
Nev., where one unit was placed on line on Dec. 31. The airline now
operates 779 eService Centers in 130 U.S. airports.
“Continental`s domestic customers now have the option of checking
themselves in at an eService Center kiosk or at continental.com, no matter
where in the United States their trips begin or where in the United States
they`re going,” said Christopher Frawley, Continental`s managing director
In 1995, Continental was the first airline to deploy electronic self-
check-in kiosks—the first were installed at Newark Liberty
International Airport—and today leads the industry in deploying this
technology, making self-check-in an option for all U.S. customers using
electronic tickets for domestic travel.
Continental has revolutionized the way travelers check in for flights,
evolving the self-service concept from a novelty nine years ago to the
predominant method of customer processing. Airlines around the world have
begun to offer self-service check-in as an option to customers. In the
past year, more than 18 million customers have used this service on
More than 70 percent of eligible customers—those using electronic
tickets for itineraries within the United States and its territories—
bypass conventional ticket counters to use eService Centers,
continental.com or curbside kiosks to check in for their flights.
Since Continental began deploying eService Centers, then called E-Ticket
Machines, nine years ago, the airline`s deployment of self-check-in kiosks
has outpaced the industry. While most U.S. airlines had relatively few of
the units available until 2001, eService Centers were available at the
majority of Continental airports by 2000.
Customers can perform a variety of functions at Continental`s eService
Centers, including checking in an individual or group for a flight on the
day of departure, selecting or changing a seat assignment, buying a ticket
or “Continental Currency” which can be redeemed for in-flight beverages
and headsets, adding a OnePass frequent flyer number to an existing
reservation, and printing baggage tags for checked bags.
Continental Airlines ticket agents actively encourage customers to use
eService Centers to expedite customer check-in and so that agents can
spend more time with customers who require additional assistance.
In most cases, customers can check in and print their boarding passes in
less than one minute, significantly reducing and in many cases eliminating
ticket counter line waits.
The first eService kiosks, converted from automated teller machines,
offered check-in, seat selection, frequent flyer verification and baggage
check. Soon after, Continental added same-day flight change and upgrading
capabilities. In 1999, Continental replaced E-Ticket Machines with the
technologically more advanced eService Centers, and made English-Spanish
Continental introduced Web site check-in at continental.com in 2003.
Customers, including those with luggage to check, can check in online up
to 30 hours before departure.
In 2004, Continental plans to add more self-service options, including
Customers at Continental`s hub at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport
regularly lead travelers throughout the nation in using options other than
conventional ticket counter check-in, with nearly 90 percent of Northeast
Ohio customers using eService Centers, continental.com or curbside
Each of Continental`s 779 eService Centers, manufactured by Lake Mary,
Fla.-based Kinetics, has a whimsical name with a connection to the city of
its location. For example, Seattle`s seven eService Centers include “Space
Needle” and “Sleepless,” and the six in New Orleans include “Mardi Gras”
and “Zydeco.” “Laverne” and “Shirley” are among the four eService Centers
in Milwaukee, and “Dorothy” and “Toto” are among four in Kansas City.
Continental Airlines is the world`s seventh-largest airline with more than
2,200 daily departures to 127 domestic and 96 international destinations
throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. With 42,000 mainline employees,
the airline has hubs serving New York, Houston, Cleveland and Guam, and
carries approximately 41 million passengers per year. Fortune ranks
Continental one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For in America, highest
among major U.S. carriers in the quality of its service and products, and
No. 2 on its list of Most Admired Global Airlines. For more company
information, visit continental.com .