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Tokyo Narita Airport to introduce end-to-end facial recognition in 2020

22 Mar 2019 by Craig Bright
Narita International Airport

Tokyo’s Narita International Airport is looking to give its passenger process experience an automated overhaul with new facial recognition technology due to be rolled out across its check-in, immigration and boarding procedures starting next year.

The airport aims to introduce a new “One ID” process sometime in spring 2020 that will provide passengers with an end-to-end automated experience using what it describes as “the world’s most advanced facial recognition technology” in an attempt to reduce queuing times.

Passengers’ facial data will be captured at their first point of contact, likely a self-service kiosk, and correlated against passport and check-in data by scanning relevant documents. It will then be possible to go through baggage check-in, security screening, immigration and boarding without having to show your passport or boarding pass a second time.

Narita Airport Facial Recognition

Initially, the service will only be available to select airlines, namely South Wing and All Nippon Airways (ANA) in Terminal 1, and Japan Airlines in Terminal 2. The service will then be extended to other airlines and terminals in phases.

Biometric scanning is increasingly being adopted by airports around the world as they attempt to boost the efficiency of their passenger process procedures amid an ever-growing number of travellers.

Singapore’s Changi Airport notably introduced a similar end-to-end biometric system at its newest Terminal 4, which allows passengers to proceed from check-in to boarding using facial recognition.

Business Traveller Asia-Pacific recently published a review of Cathay Pacific’s economy class from Singapore Terminal 4 to Hong Kong, including a detailed overview of the end-to-end automated passenger process procedure.

Narita Airport also has been seeing other technological trials in recent months, including Japan Airlines using voice-recognition and artificial intelligence to speed up check-in procedures.

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