Gatwick airport has announced that they are trialling a new biometric self-boarding gate system, which should help save time for passengers and improve flight departure times. The largest partner of the airport Easyjet, has agreed to help trial the new gates and will introduce this to 10,000 Easyjet passengers on European flights.
These new gates use the personal data gathered at the airports self-service bag drops to allow passengers to use the biometric self-boarding gates. The airport hopes this will speed up the boarding process and take under 20 seconds per passenger.
The passengers will be told in advance before they arrive at the airport that a trial is being experimented, and will be given the chance to not take part should they wish. Gatwick has also said data that is recorded by the biometrics will be disposed of after 24 hours.
The self-boarding trial will run for at least three months, to allow the airport to gather enough data on whether they can adapt or change the process. While also estimating how long the process takes and how well liked it is. But mainly to see how much it speeds up the passenger journey and departure times.
Chris Woodroofe, COO of Gatwick airport, said: “With the rate of growth we have experienced, it is essential we are able to find more efficient ways of processing passengers through the airport safely and securely. Self-boarding technology is the obvious next piece in the jigsaw following extensive investment in our automated check-in and security processing areas.”
Easyjets director of ground operations, Karen Cox went on to say: “Whilst still in its very early stages, this project is clearly consistent with our digital strategy of continuing to innovate to make passengers’ journeys easier at every stage of their interaction with us – from searching and browsing for a flight through to stepping off the aircraft in their destination.”
What are your thoughts on biometric self-boarding gates? Is it something that could excite passengers by making the process quicker, or maybe the more “traditional” method might still be preferred by many due to the personalization and interaction. Let us know in the comments below!