The friendly skies go virtual
These are new rules being issued by the International Air Transport Association, according to The Washington Post, which ran a story on this issue earlier in the week.
For many passengers, the ones who are using e-tickets anyway, nothing will really change. Tickets can still be bought over the phone, through travel agents and, of course, online. If a passenger doesn't own a printer, no biggie -- you'll just pick up your ticket at the counter or at those electronic kiosks in airports.
Why is this happening? Simple economics. Paper tickets cost $10 to create and process, while an e-ticket costs a mere $1. Your next question is of course, "Hey, so does this mean the airlines will be passing along the cost to the passengers?"
While I'm not exactly sure, but when I called a few airline help desks to ask, all I could hear was laughter. Maybe that means yes?
Geoff Williams is a business journalist, primarily for Entrepreneur magazine, and the author of C.C. Pyle's Amazing Foot Race: The True Story of the 1928 Coast-to-Coast Run Across America (Rodale, 2007).