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Future airports must use smart tech as passenger numbers double

May 27, 2021
aviation

Airport Show Hybrid hears that there will be 19.7bln passengers at world airports by 2040

Smart technology is an absolute necessity for the airports of the future to cope with increased traffic, which is set to double by 2040, an aviation industry conference heard.

Speaking at the Airport Show Hybrid, Major General Khalifa Ibrahim Al Saleis, CEO, Security Industry Regulatory Agency, said according to the Airport Council International, in the year 2018 there were 8.8 billion passengers at world airports. In 2040 the number is expected to increase to 19.7 billion.

This means travel procedures need to be simplified, while maintaining the safety and security of airports and passengers. The results of using smart solutions is already being seen, according to Saleis.

“Smart counters resulted in reducing waiting time, waiting queues, waiting time for passport control, security check, and duty-free and other outlets,” he said.

“In 2018 and 2019 it was recorded that 78 percent users of these services were economy class passengers, which helped avoid crowding and reduction in waiting time at the terminal.

“The use of smart phone application[s] for travel procedures, such as printing boarding passes, advance ticket booking, reduced the waiting time at the airports [and] achieved social distancing.”

The conference heard that in 2018 and 2019, 40 percent of Emirates Airline passengers used the online check-in service and that in 2020, self-registration kiosks at the airports reduced human contact and helped social distancing.

Smart or digital visa facilities also have the potential to speed up the airport process.

The next technological step is smart search devices, which are expected to handle over 900 passengers per hour and will be deployed in the coming years.

zawya