Lufthansa piloting biometric boarding at LAX
Lufthansa’s biometric boarding solution, which according to a TravelWeek report enabled boarding 350 passengers onto an A380 in about 20 minutes, is now being piloted at LAX and will soon be rolled-out at more U.S. gateways and other passenger touchpoints across the United States.
The LAX pilot project is in collaboration with Lufthansa Group’s IT partner, Amadeus, CBP, Vision Box and Los Angeles World Airports Authority (LAWA).
The solution works using self-boarding gates with facial recognition cameras to capture passengers’ facial images as they approach the device. The image is securely sent to the CBP database for real-time matching and verification and after a successful match the system recognizes the passenger as ‘boarded’ so the passenger no longer needs to show a boarding pass or passport at the gate.
“The increasing need for airlines, airports and authorities to offer faster and more convenient processes for guests to move through the airport creates a unique opportunity for the use of biometrics,” said Bjoern Becker, Senior Director, Product Management Ground and Digital Services for Lufthansa. “Lufthansa strives to enhance the customer experience by applying advanced technologies and innovative solutions. This is a further step towards achieving that goal.”
Becker added that biometrics are becoming a key element to speed up the airport process while ensuring passenger safety and security. In the U.S., airlines will not need to create and maintain their own biometric database as it can rely on data provided from a central source – the CBP – for efficiency and accuracy.
“We anticipate that in near time, biometric boarding, as well as other aspects of the air travel experience, will be widely utilized across the U.S. and beyond.”
Earlier this month, SITA and British Airways began trialing biometric boarding at Orlando International Airport.