Increasing passenger numbers returning to the airport post-pandemic should be a cause for celebration. But coupled with critical staff shortages across the travel industry, it’s led to extreme delays in passenger processing at the airport, so much so that many travellers are missing their flights.
While many airports are cash-strapped and under increased pressure to cut costs, it’s here where investments in airport technology are paramount. Digital technologies are crucial to efficient airports and play a key role in delivering a positive passenger experience.
Join us as we reveal some of the different airport technologies efficient airports are using to process passengers more quickly.
When it comes to speeding up passenger processing, most people think of disruptive technologies like self-boarding gates using facial recognition, which reduce the need for airport staff to check passengers’ passports physically. However, with the Rezcomm Marketplace, speeding up passenger processing can start long before the passenger even reaches the airport.
Here at Rezcomm, we’ve spent a long time researching how parking reservation software and airport ecommerce can streamline and focus passengers’ time at the airport, so they can interact with more revenue-generating touchpoints and have a more enjoyable experience. Providing an airport ecommerce website where passengers can make parking reservations and purchase security/immigration fast track tickets is a great way to speed up and improve the efficiency of passengers’ journey through the airport.
As Johan Berhin, Designer & Founder of Green Furniture Concept, highlighted at the International Airport Review Online Summit, “today’s travellers have less and less time.” So, we need to find ways to speed up the ‘boring’ (yet essential) parts of the airport experience and optimise the dwell time passengers have, so they can spend money in duty-free and enjoy time in airports’ restaurants and retail stores. Doing so will create a better passenger experience while generating more non-aeronautical revenue for airports.
Moreover, by offering fast track ticket purchases via an airport ecommerce website or app, efficient airports not only speed up and improve passenger journeys but also benefit from collecting valuable data. The airport can then use this passenger data to enhance and personalise individuals’ airport experience.
But that’s not all. Aside from offering ecommerce purchases to speed up the passenger journey and ensure a seamless experience, airports can also use their mobile apps to deliver personalised real-time information to passengers, which we’ll discuss a little later.
It’s fair to say that the COVID-19 pandemic has made passengers more comfortable using technology at the airport. For instance, today’s passengers are not only using their mobile phones for e-ticketing but also showing personal information, like their vaccine status, with digital certificates.
Passengers’ wider acceptance of airport technology is highly beneficial to airports dealing with staff shortages and looking for ways to speed up passenger processing. For example, efficient airports can now use virtual queuing, or as we call it at Rezcomm, ‘Queueless Journeys.’ Instead of waiting in lengthy queues, passengers can pre-book a time of arrival anywhere queues typically exist in the airport and are notified when it’s their turn. Virtual queuing prevents masses of passengers from gathering in one place, improves flow and efficiency and enables a more seamless and frictionless experience.
Another technology airports can use to process passengers more quickly is Contactless Customer Service. Instead of visiting a support desk, passengers scan a QR code at the airport with their smartphone and access a digital portal to get answers to their questions or speak with a live chat agent for the airport. It’s quicker, less staff-intensive and helps to increase passenger satisfaction—a win-win for all.
Often it’s the hidden ‘behind-the-scenes’ tech that makes a huge difference to operational efficiency at the airport. An example is efficient technologies like visual sensors, which monitor passenger line lengths and evaluate how quickly people move through airport checkpoints. The airport can use this information to determine where they need to deploy more airport staff and move passengers along to shorter queues.
Moving passengers are happy passengers (and happy passengers spend money), so it’s worth investing in technology that maintains passenger flow. As Johan Berhin said at the IAR Online Summit, “a 1% rise in satisfaction gives a 1.5% rise in customer spend at the airport. So an investment in passenger experience quickly pays for itself.”
While we’re champions of seamless airport technology here at Rezcomm, we’re also big on real-time information. Access to this business intelligence enables airport managers to see precisely what is happening in the terminals and take immediate action—for instance, deploying staff at busy times, opening new lanes or re-routing passengers to avoid congestion.
Additionally, integrated with an airport app or digital signage at the airport, there’s the opportunity to relay real-time information to passengers and ease the stress of travel. For example, providing passengers with their wait time could help reduce their worries about missing their flight. Furthermore, airports can send passengers a discount for fast-track tickets or queueless journeys during busy times to improve passenger flow and generate more revenue.
Taking it up a level, airports could even use their business intelligence and mobile apps to inform passengers of the restaurants or cafes with available tables, helping them optimise their dwell time while they queue virtually. With access to real-time information, the opportunities for speeding up passenger processing, enhancing the customer experience and maximising revenue-generating opportunities are endless.
Join the growing list of efficient airports working with Rezcomm to improve passenger processing and deliver a seamless experience. Download our brochure to discover our advanced business intelligence solutions, and book a meeting to learn how we can support your team.
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