Facebook has been talking on and on this past year about turning Messenger into a more than just a chat service, and a service being launched today illustrates exactly what that future looks like. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is now giving passengers the option to receive flight updates through Messenger. If they agree while booking a ticket, KLM will then start up a chat thread, where it’ll send booking confirmation, flight status, and any scheduling changes. It’ll also send over a boarding pass, which passengers will be able to use to get through security and onto their flight.
Digital boarding passes aren’t anything new, but Messenger’s conversational interface is. It’s a familiar way for KLM to get in touch with customers, and a convenient one for the many people who already use Messenger daily to get in touch with friends. KLM goes beyond just sending updates, too — passengers will also be able to chat with KLM support right inside of Messenger.
David Marcus, who leads the Messenger team at Facebook, makes it sound like KLM is just the start of its work with airlines. “This is one that I’ve been personally eager to solve for a while,” Marcus says. “Removing stress, and complication from air travel.” He refers to KLM as Facebook’s “first airline partner,” which certainly suggests Facebook is looking to add more.