South Africa’s Airports Set to Deploy Biometric Systems to Reduce Queues

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South Africa’s airports are set to implement biometric systems in order to reduce waiting times and queues for passengers. The country’s government-run airports management body, Airports Company South Africa (ACSA), plans to deploy a biometric passenger check system across all airports in the country. The project, estimated to cost around 100 million South African rand (US$5.2 million), aims to streamline the physical clearance processes that often cause delays at airports such as OR Tambo and Cape Town.

ACSA’s Chief Information Officer, Mthokozisi Mncwabe, stated that the transformative project will rely on robotics and artificial intelligence technologies. The Department of Home Affairs is collaborating with ACSA on this initiative, which has been allocated funds in the country’s 2023/2024 state budget.

In other news related to biometrics and automation in airports, Lufthansa has announced that business class and frequent travelers can now access the Schengen lounge at Munich Airport without presenting their boarding pass. This is made possible through a facial recognition system implemented by Star Alliance. Passengers using Gate 28 can use the biometric system by registering on the Miles & More app and completing the necessary passport requirements.

Moreover, Munich Airport is introducing a pilot project for autonomous passenger boarding bridges in Terminal 2. Dabico Airport Solutions Germany GmbH has signed a letter of intent with the airport to determine the requirements for the autonomous operation of these bridges, further expanding the use of biometric-enhanced systems in the German hub.

Additionally, Spirit Airlines, in partnership with the Wayne County Airport Authority, has rolled out a biometric system at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport. This system allows passengers to verify their identity and check their bags without assistance from airport agents. The machines installed at six units at the airport match scanned travel documents with passengers’ faces for authentication.

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The use of biometrics and automation in airports is gaining momentum globally. Singapore, for instance, is planning to pass legislation that will enable a more flexible and modern border control system. The use of biometrics and other automated systems will allow the country to efficiently manage the increasing number of travelers while maintaining security. Singapore’s Minister for Information and Communications, Josephine Teo, stated that the departure journey at Changi Airport will be biometric-enabled, end-to-end starting from the first half of 2024. Biometrics will be employed at various touchpoints, including bag-drop, immigration, and boarding, creating a single authentication token.

The implementation of biometric systems and automation in airports aims to enhance the traveler experience, reduce waiting times, and ensure efficient processes. These advancements not only improve convenience for passengers but also contribute to overall security measures. As airports around the world continue to adopt and integrate biometric technologies, the future of travel looks increasingly streamlined and hassle-free.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Related to the Above News

What is the purpose of implementing biometric systems in South Africa's airports?

The purpose is to reduce waiting times and queues for passengers, streamline clearance processes, and improve overall efficiency at airports.

Which airports in South Africa will be implementing the biometric passenger check system?

All airports in the country, including OR Tambo and Cape Town airports, will be implementing the biometric system.

What technologies will be used in the biometric passenger check system?

The system will rely on robotics and artificial intelligence technologies.

How much is the estimated cost of the biometric system implementation?

The project is estimated to cost around 100 million South African rand (US$5.2 million).

Which government body is overseeing the implementation of the biometric systems?

The implementation is being overseen by Airports Company South Africa (ACSA), the government-run airports management body.

Is the Department of Home Affairs involved in this initiative?

Yes, the Department of Home Affairs is collaborating with ACSA on this initiative.

What benefits does Lufthansa's facial recognition system offer to business class and frequent travelers?

With the facial recognition system, passengers can access the Schengen lounge at Munich Airport without presenting their boarding pass.

How can passengers use the biometric system at Gate 28 in Munich Airport?

Passengers can use the biometric system by registering on the Miles & More app and completing the necessary passport requirements.

Are there any other biometric-related projects being implemented at Munich Airport?

Munich Airport is introducing a pilot project for autonomous passenger boarding bridges in Terminal 2, expanding the use of biometric-enhanced systems at the airport.

What capabilities does the biometric system at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport offer?

The biometric system allows passengers to verify their identity and check their bags without assistance from airport agents.

What plans does Singapore have regarding the use of biometrics and automation in airports?

Singapore plans to pass legislation to enable a more flexible and modern border control system, using biometrics and other automated systems to manage increasing traveler numbers efficiently.

When will the departure journey at Changi Airport in Singapore become biometric-enabled?

The departure journey at Changi Airport will be biometric-enabled, end-to-end starting from the first half of 2024.

In addition to the departure journey, where else will biometrics be employed at Changi Airport?

Biometrics will be employed at various touchpoints, including bag-drop, immigration, and boarding, creating a single authentication token.

What are the benefits of implementing biometric systems and automation in airports?

Implementing biometric systems and automation improves the traveler experience, reduces waiting times, and ensures efficient processes. These advancements also contribute to overall security measures at airports.

Is the use of biometric technologies in airports a global trend?

Yes, the use of biometric technologies and automation in airports is gaining momentum globally, with airports around the world adopting and integrating these advancements.

Please note that the FAQs provided on this page are based on the news article published. While we strive to provide accurate and up-to-date information, it is always recommended to consult relevant authorities or professionals before making any decisions or taking action based on the FAQs or the news article.

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