Edinburgh airport has become the first to bring multi-airline bag drop system operation to the UK in a move that has seen them install ten, new self-service kiosks and web-based software that operates a fully common, shared bag drop facility for its passengers.
Operated by EasyJet and FlyBe, passengers will retain control of their entire check-in experience, from online check-in and self-printed boarding pass to baggage weigh in and luggage tag attachment, when they will be directed to a drop off point to dispatch their luggage.
Although new to Edinburgh and the UK, this system is in operation in CUTE platforms across the world and is designed to streamline airport operations. Using common-use functions for bag drop system operation speeds up the check-in process and allows cost-sharing within the terminal, also freeing up premium space.
This is just the beginning for Edinburgh airport, as they plan to continue a programme of investment for the installation of the latest technological solutions. Later this year, they plan to carry out a trial for a baggage storage facility, where passengers will be able to check-in luggage in advance of the flight.
David Wilson, chief operating officer at Edinburgh Airport, says: “New ownership has allowed us to be creative in the way we look at the check-in process. A huge amount of research, engagement and investment has gone into this new process and we’re delighted to officially launch the first multi-airline common bag drop facility in the UK with our partners at easyJet and Flybe.
Montreal Trudeau Airport has converted eight of their 17 previously manned baggage desks into self-service bag drop points in a bid to enhance passenger check-in and speed up operations within the terminal.
More passengers will now be able to make use of the common use, self-service bag drop points for multiple airlines baggage on any flight bound for the US. The airport has observed that the new system has already been adopted by almost half the passengers.
Common-use self-service bag drop points have and will continue to revolutionise airline travel worldwide, streamlining the check-in system and helping to create fluidity within the terminal space that has previously lacked the world over.
Maintaining airport security still remains a priority and the common use desks use up-to-the-minute technology to ensure all the bases are touched in this area. While many of us still check-in online and an increasing number check-in at off-site locations, the self-service bag drop desks offer airlines and airports greater use of terminal space and staff to ensure that the passenger service and experience is better than ever.
According to ARINC, passengers are set to spend significantly less time waiting at airports in the near future as airline operators and airports invest in advanced technological solutions designed to increase operational efficiency from advanced passenger information systems to automated baggage handling.
“The passenger is the one who’s going to have more control over that whole experience than they currently have,” said Michael DiGeorge, Managing Director of ARINC Asia Pacific. “That process of going from check-in through immigration through boarding is going to get more invisible.”
Passengers regularly wait for an average of three hours, sometimes more, which is causing industry-wide concern, especially during peak-time congestion, with the real fear of the denial of landing rights during those times.
ARINC’s extensive collection of innovative products are targeted to improve passenger information screening and transmission, travel documentation and check-in, which in turn will increase the flow of passenger traffic through airport terminals and remove the stress for passengers, airlines and operational facilities.
With many Asian nation plans to build new airports and terminals, there is a strong likelihood of growing competition to provide the best experience for passengers and airlines. It stands to reason that the facilities that can provide smooth and fast passenger experience are going to be the most successful in the future of an industry that is ever-expanding as demand and expectation grows.
Germany’s Munich Airport has awarded the contract for their new baggage handling system in terminal 2 to Siemens, it was recently announced.
The airport plans to increase the capacity of their baggage handling system as they expect passenger numbers to rise significantly by 2015. Once the new building is completed, it will enable a passenger throughflow of up to 11 million additional yearly passengers.
“In this way, our customers can ensure the same reliability and speed as before, despite the growing volume of traffic and stricter security requirements,” said Siemens Business Unit Logistics and Airport Solutions CEO Jorg Ernst.
The project will be launched in three phases over the next two years and is expected to enhance operational productivity for the airport by a third upon completion of the entire new project, making Munich Airport one of the most efficient in Europe.
Other Automated Baggage Handling System providers such as ARINC Inc realise that the global self-service check-in revolution is definitely the way forward. Passenger experience is greatly enhanced, giving the passenger more control over their journey and reducing waiting times, while airports feel the benefit of improved efficiency, cost effectivity and better use of terminal space.
Ben-Gurion International Airport in Israel is going to trial a new automated baggage security system which is hoped will shorten waiting times for passengers during security checks. The system will scan, using an automated baggage system, for explosives and other potentially dangerous material, separating those bags for further screening, before delivering the cleared baggage for loading onto the aircraft.
The new system should help to streamline airport operations and enhance passenger experience, while maintaining strict pre-flight security.
Worldwide, airports are realising the increased efficiency of automated operations, including passenger processing and the groundbreaking self-service check-in and automated baggage drop solutions.
It is easy to see, with current industry-leaders offering technologically advanced check-in and baggage solutions on the ground and in the air, that the future of airline travel could be fully automated, safe and with reduced waiting times.