Manual authentication in airports means that passengers need to present different forms of ID such as boarding cards, booking reference numbers as well as their passports to different agents to show that they’re authorized to travel. These processes take a lot of time.
IATA research shows that 64% of passengers would choose to share their biometric data in exchange for a better experience when traveling. Facial biometrics are more accurate than manual checks and offer increased security, demonstrating how technology helps us without impacting on passenger experience.
London Heathrow Airport has said its passengers are set for a biometric revolution from the summer of 2019, as the average passenger’s journey time will be reduced by up to a third.
The new technology will be a first for the UK’s only hub airport and will streamline the passenger journey through Heathrow from check-in to take-off.
The new system uses facial recognition at check-in, bag drops, security lanes and boarding gates to create a seamless experience for passengers traveling through the airport.
This £50 million project is part of a wider program of investment to streamline passenger journeys and once complete will mean that Heathrow will have the world’s largest deployment of biometric products.
The long-term aim of the technology will be for passengers to be able to walk through the airport without breaking their stride. Passengers have already been trialling the new services in the live operation throughout 2018 and feedback has been tremendously positive.
By offering passengers the option to use more instant facial recognition technology they will have the choice to streamline the process and collectively significantly reduce the amount of paper used when flying.
Heathrow has already begun using facial recognition in some stages of the passenger journey, both on entry to the UK at the Border with the biometric e-gates. The technology is also used for domestic journeys through the airport, but this will be the first time that Heathrow will use the technology at every stage of the departing passenger’s journey. This has the potential to allow for greater personalization of passenger services, useful for passengers requiring additional assistance, according to securitydocumentworld.com.
According to the airport authorities, biometrics are key to make travel through the airport easy and quick whilst keeping airport security, and enhance passenger experience.
This post is also available in: עברית (Hebrew)