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Heathrow partners with South African Airways on self-boarding trial


The self-boarding trial being undertaken by London Heathrow and South African Airways.

The self-boarding trial being undertaken by London Heathrow and South African Airways is helping to streamline the passenger journey through the airport’s Terminal 1.

London Heathrow Airport and South African Airways are currently partnering on a two-month self-boarding trial. Passengers in Terminal 1 are being invited to participate in the trial, which uses biometric data to ensure more efficient, speedier boarding.

When passengers reach the ‘self-boarding’ gate, they pass through an automatic electronic barrier, which takes an infrared scan of their face. This information is checked against biometric data taken at the check-in stage. If the two sets of data match, the barrier opens and the passenger can board their flight. The passenger data gathered is stored securely and will be destroyed at the end of the trial.

An added benefit is that it allows airline staff to spend more time with those travellers requiring greater assistance.

This new technology is helping to streamline the passenger journey through Heathrow’s Terminal 1. Ian Hanson, Heathrow’s Terminal 1 Director, said: “We are working in partnership with our airlines to trial this technology, which should help make our passengers’ journeys smoother and simpler. Since its introduction we have had positive feedback from both airlines and passengers.”

Future Travel Experience Europe 2015

Interested in learning more about improving your passenger experience? At FTE Europe 2015, which will take place in London from 2-4 February 2015, senior speakers from the likes of Heathrow Airport, Ryanair, Swedavia, Norwegian Air Shuttle, Munich Airport, Virgin Atlantic, Expedia, London City Airport, IATA, Air France-KLM, London Stansted Airport, Lufthansa, Bechtel, Gatwick Airport and United Airlines will share their latest passenger-focused plans and visions in the 'On the Ground' conference.

The event will also include a dedicated 'Up in the Air' conference stream, IATA workshop, an extensive exhibition, tours of Heathrow T2, London Stansted and London City Airport, and a 'Best of British' Gala Evening at Altitude 360 @ Altitude London, London's premier sky venue which offers jetliner views of the city.

» View the full FTE Europe 2015 'On the Ground' agenda

» Register to attend FTE Europe 2015

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