YakobchukOlena - stock.adobe.com
Airport operator Avinor has rolled out technology across airports in Norway that will enable passengers to make their journeys without needing to interact with people or machines.
Domestic air travel is essential and well used in Norway because of the country’s geography, and many travellers have no choice but to fly to some destinations.
Avinor’s service, which it describes as “touchless”, was created to reduce the potential for the Covid-19 coronavirus to spread via air passengers who come into contact with it.
Using technology from Amadeus combined with social distancing, Norway’s state-owned airports will offer touchless check-in and bag drop.
Passengers can check in remotely and receive a boarding pass via their smartphones, including a tag for their luggage. When they arrive, a barcode is scanned at a self-service kiosk and bag tags are produced automatically.
Bags, with the tags attached, are put into the baggage system by the passenger with no involvement from airport staff.
As part of the project, self-service bag drop units were re-engineered by Avinor with a new smart configuration of the existing barcode scanners and passenger dialogue in order to make the process contactless.
Avinor has introduced this capability at Oslo airport and will soon make it available in Bergen, Stavanger and Trondheim. These four hubs account for 66% of flight departures in Norway. The technology and supporting processes will be implemented in a total of 17 airports.
Passengers flying with SAS, Norwegian Air and Widerøe will be the first to benefit.
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Avinor CIO Brede Nielsen said Norwegians rely heavily on air travel, so it is vital to reduce the chances of Covid-19 spreading. “Given our unique geography, many Norwegians depend on their local airport for both business and leisure travels,” he said. “Several domestic routes serve more than a million passengers every year. We operate several of Europe’s top 20 busiest routes within Norway.
“This reduces the risk of being exposed to the virus to an absolute minimum and we are confident that travellers will welcome our new touchless approach. We have worked quickly and flexibly with Amadeus and [Amadeus company] ICM to build and deploy new technology to make it both safer and easier to fly from our airports. We’re now in a strong position to serve increased numbers of passengers travelling during the summer period.”
Nielsen added: “Our goal has been to design our touchless travel process to be as easy and intuitive as we can.”
Avinor uses Amadeus’ cloud-based passenger handling platform, which means that technical development and smooth data exchange with airline partners has been rapid, expediting the development of the touchless check-in and baggage system.
Yannick Beunardeau, vice-president airport IT, EMEA, at Amadeus, said the pandemic had forced the travel industry to look beyond conventional operating models, and to redefine the passenger experience. “Common to all is the need to create an agile and adaptive airport environment, that might mean shifting check-in off-airport, adding automation or accelerating the move to touchless check-in, bag drop and boarding,” he said. “In each case, flexible, cloud-based technology is a necessity.”