Interview with Bayram Annakov, Founder & CEO at App In The Air

We are technology company, building solutions for frequent flyers and the airlines and airports that serve them. We created the App In The Air (AITA) application as a leading personal travel assistant for frequent fliers, and a virtual meeting place for avid business and leisure travellers.

We aim to make it easy for our users to juggle multiple itineraries and rewards programmes, with built-in features and a streamlined interface that take the hassle out of flying.

The app keeps track of travel itineraries, boarding passes, and frequent-flier programmes from across all airlines. Users can track boarding and landing times, receive real-time updates for delays, wait times for check-in and security, ensure their carry-on meets airline dimensions standards via our AR luggage measurement tool, and gain smart travel hacks from our community of savvy travellers.

To help our users understand the ever-changing Covid-19 travel restrictions, we recently launched new ‘travelsafe’ tools. details country-to-country and airline restrictions guides, insights on arrival health requirements and government restrictions, as well as airline policies. In-app functionality makes it easy to check travel restrictions, airport and airline requirements, and apply key health filters to flight searches. We also help our users to make more environmentally conscious booking choices and to offset their carbon emissions.
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How did you come up with the idea for the company?

I came up with the idea for AITA after watching Up In the Air, the 2009 George Clooney film about a corporate downsizing expert on the cusp of ten million frequent flyer miles.

I founded the app in 2012 and, working alongside my talented, global team, we have grown from a small network of dedicated fliers to over six million active users with 20 million itineraries tracked per year. I am extremely proud that we were among Apple’s Best Apps of 2015, and one of Apple Watch’s favourite apps of 2018.


What advice would you give to other aspiring entrepreneurs?

I would say work hard and assemble a team of the best people you can, who buy into your vision and share your passion. Getting started is tough and it requires a lot of faith in the idea, and it is the enthusiasm for your brand or product that will sustain you all.
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What can we hope to see from App in the Air in the future?

I am excited to say that we will soon be launching flight booking functionality in the UK, allowing our British users to search and book their preferred flights just as soon as we can travel again. UK users will then be able to benefit from our partnership with One Tree Planted, with whom we plant a tree for every flight purchased through AITA.

Our Covid travel management site and in-app developments have been highly valued by our community, so we are looking at creating new tools to help frequent fliers navigate post-pandemic travel, such as making the most of remote working opportunities.

My longer-term vision is to create an AI-led travel revolution, advocating for the underserved flier, and making the travelling process even more efficient and enjoyable for our users.