SXSW Revamps
the Guest Pass Experience Using Mobile Wallet

Every year, thousands of music lovers and networking professionals convene in Austin for an action-packed week with over 6,000 events — and SXSW always ups the ante by integrating innovative technology into the attendee experience. In its third year of the Guest Pass program, the festival catered to the mobile nature of its audience by introducing a digital alternative to the wristband.


Using Airship Mobile Wallet, the SXSW team was able to bypass the costly, time-consuming process of obtaining and distributing physical passes while giving attendees the convenience of mobile entry.

Previously, guests had to obtain credentials via the SXSW website and then pick up their guest wristbands at a physical location in Austin before attending any free shows or events.

This required the SXSW team to coordinate with outside vendors and retailers around Austin, print and deliver the wristbands and troubleshoot issues with missing bands on-site — all within days of the event. With Mobile Wallet, SXSW was able to lower costs and increase mobile engagement while supporting its focus on sustainability.

South by Southwest (SXSW) offers a unique convergence of music, film and technology at its annual conferences and festivals in Austin, Texas.

By switching from physical passes to Mobile Wallet, SXSW saw an increase of 25% in total credentials distributed and a 54% decrease in overall credential costs compared to the previous year.




Mobile Wallet

With Airship Mobile Wallet, we’ve started to move away from the dependency on physical Guest Passes, leading to a smaller footprint in terms of both cost and sustainability, all while gaining more Guest Pass participants.”


Simplifying the Guest Pass Program


Airship Helps SXSW Amplify Mobile Engagement

outside of content
Increase in total credentials distributed
outside of content
Decrease in overall credential costs vs. physical-only guest passes