After adding transit tickets in March and rolling out to the web this week, Google Pay now appears to be gaining support for flight boarding passes. Like with public transportation, the process of saving a pass to the digital wallet begins in the airline app.
During the check-in process for a Southwest flight today (to Google I/O 2018, coincidently), I noticed that the Android app featured a new Google Pay-branded “Save to phone” button directly on the boarding pass screen.
Tapping surfaced a prompt asking if I wanted to save the “Boarding Pass card to the Google Pay app” with an option to select the right Google account from a picker in the top-left corner. Meanwhile, a toast message provides confirmation of a succesful save.
In addition to transit passes, Google Pay (and Android Pay before it) has long featured support for saving loyalty cards, gift cards, and offers in the app. That description is still listed, with no mention of the new boarding pass feature.
That pass is still grouped under the Rewards, Gift Cards & Offers section of the “Cards” tab in Google Pay. Opening takes users to an airline-branded card that feature a quick summary and a tappable QR code for scanning at the airline gate. An overflow in the top-right corner allows users to delete the pass.
Below is detailed information like the departure/boarding time, destination, drink ticket, loyalty program number, and fare type, as well as the airline’s telephone number and website address.
This is a natural addition for Google Pay, with the service adding a number of new features since the February rebrand. Integrating Pay Send (formerly Google Wallet) is on the roadmap, while I/O 2018 features a half-dozen “Payments” sessions, office hours, and app reviews for developers.
Southwest for Android was just updated last week, and hopefully other airline apps will soon add support for this convenient new feature.