Variably Printed In-Flight Menus Help Airline Achieve Sustainability Goals | Travel


Variably Printed In-Flight Menus Help Airline Achieve Sustainability Goals | Travel

RRD’s proprietary technology automates high-volume printing variability, enabling cost-effective sustainability for global airline


A leading airline with a longstanding history of providing reliable transportation to destinations around the globe is also well known for its strong commitment to sustainability. To reduce paper waste, the airline had transitioned from printed menus to a digital-only menu format onboard all international flights. 

However, the airline received feedback from passengers indicating that they preferred printed, in-hand menus. The airline sought a way to address its customers’ preferences for physical menus while also meeting its sustainability commitments and goals.


The airline leaned on an existing partnership with RRD to help reintroduce printed menus. RRD deployed Avenue, a proprietary automation technology, to quickly, accurately, and efficiently create the high volume of required menu versions. 

Each month, the airline requires an average of 200-300 menu variations — each reflecting multiple languages, varying menu inclusions, and cost differences. Streamlined processes and best-in-class technology enabled the team to quickly scale menu production as needed — all without necessitating additional time or manpower.

To deliver on the airline’s sustainability commitments, RRD liaised with local paper-sourcing partners to determine cost-effective recycled paper options. RRD utilized its size and scale to negotiate a material cost for recycled paper that would maintain a high-quality product and superior feel while lowering the airline’s overall investment.


RRD’s technological solutions and process improvements helped the airline reintroduce printed menus specific to each corresponding flight destination’s specifications. The resulting workflow supports hundreds of menu versions each month and exclusively utilizes sustainable materials. 

Additional benefits include:

  • Information flows directly from a data file to a workable PDF format, enhancing efficiency and minimizing room for error
  • RRD Avenue streamlines the creative and production workflows
  • Review cycles are simplified and have increased accuracy
  • On-demand, scalable solution enables more versions and higher quantities as needed
  • RRD standard operating procedures simplify menu translations, supporting more than 10 languages each month
  • All menus are now printed on recycled paper

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