The air travel is increasing all around the world. Especially in countries like UAE where a huge number of expats are living along with millions of tourists visiting every year, the air travel is very common. The Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah are among the busiest airports in the region. Everyone knows the air travel could be so tedious and frustrating, let say if you have a 3 hours long flight, you must have to arrive around two hours earlier and after landing the immigration and clearance etc. could also consume a lot of time, which can easily expand a 3 hour air travel into a 7 to 8 hour hustle. Considering the current situation when there are several additional procedures and processes due to the COVID-19 situation, the air travel could be lengthier and more tedious. The passengers wants to get everything done as quickly as possible. The airport management wants to clear the lobbies and waiting area as fast as they could to prepare for the next flights and so on. In short there are too many things that airport management has to take care of in order to ensure the smooth process and happy passengers.
The airports are not just a transit point, in fact it is a very first interaction and impression of a country for millions of traveler. In this modern age of the internet and social media this image or impression could be shared with many more millions of people. It is not only the airport management but the governmentsalso who want to ensure an excellent passenger experience at their airports. This is when some automated tools and self-service solutions like interactive airport kiosks can be a great relief for both the passengers as well as the airport management and staff. The self-service interactive kiosks are very integrated in our daily lives. Since past few years the self-service interactive kiosks and digital experience have gained a huge adaptation all around the world. It is very logical to utilize the same in the airports too. In fact the passengers these days expect some kind of digitally enhanced experience and self-service terminals at the airports. Airports all around the world are heavily digitalizing and implementing modernized technologies to enhance their passenger’s experience and passenger journey. The self-service interactive kiosks or interactive airports kiosks are appearing everywhere all around the world. Here is a quick introduction to the airport kiosks and why they are so important in 2022:
What is an Airport Kiosk?
An airport kiosk is a self-service interactive kiosks. A self-service interactive kiosk have a user interface, mainly a touch screen based user interface along with required peripherals such as passport scanner, retina scanners, biometrics, boarding pass printer, receipt printer or any other such device. Different airport use different types of airport kiosks meant to facilitate certain section or even the entire passenger journey. Some airport also use guided signage and other methods to take the user through a fully or semi-automated self-service passenger journey. Mostly a few steps of the passenger journey are integrated with digital self-service solutions. The airport kiosks are also very helpful for the customer service representatives by simplifying their tasks and improving their efficiency.
Airport Kiosk for Self Service Check-in Process
One of the main application of an airport kiosk is for the self-service check-in process. Many airports are using and many more are planning to implement such airport kiosks. Busy airports like Dubai International Airport (DXB), Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH) or Sharjah International Airport (SHJ) can utilize the self-service check-in kiosk to boost their efficiency and to enhance the passenger experience and passenger journey. The airport kiosk with self-service check-in functionality also have a powerful software tool which can offer multi-lingual user interface and can be connected with various databases to ensure great functionality and quicker transition. The passengers don’t like being standing in long line for flight check-in process. This also put strain on the airport management and staff. A self-service check-in airport kiosk can effectively address this problem.
Here are some of the basic features of an airport kiosk for self-service check-in:
Print Boarding Passes,Luggage Tags and Tickets
Usually airport kiosks that are used for printing boarding passes and tickets are placed at the entrance of the airport. Some placed them inside and provide additional self-service counter along with the manual/traditional counters. The passengers can easily use the self-service check-in airport kiosk by signing-in with their credentials or by adding details of their ticket/booking or reservation number. Even the passengers can purchase same-day tickets or pay against their online bookings via the self-service check-in airport kiosk. The entire process takes a few steps and the kiosk’s large screen displays instructions for each steps as well, which makes it very quick and easy for the passengers. Once the check-in is done the self-service check-in airport kiosk can print the boarding pass for the passenger. The passengers can also print the luggage tags from the same kiosk which also reduce the check-in service delivery time and make the entire process very convenient and quicker for the passengers.
Change, Update or Upgrade Tickets
Along with the self-service check-in functionality the airport kiosk can also offer additional features such as allowing the passengers to change their same-day flights or even allow them to cancel their tickets or re-schedule their flights. It all depends upon the policy of the airline and the airport. Usually when passengers are having connecting flights or transit flights they sometime requires to change their flight schedules or they sometime need to purchase same-day flight to avoid conflict which could be caused due to late flight or any other reason. Such features help the passengers and makes it easier for them to get the information about all the available flights without going to the counter of every airline at the airport. All the information and booking functionalities can be provided at the self-service check-in airport kiosk. The passengers can also access and use their reward points or flyer miles by simply logging-in at the self-service check-in airport kiosk. The passengers can also access to their other perks such as foods, drinks or passes for executive or VIP lounges. The self-service check-in kiosk can offers tons of features which enhance passenger experience and improve their journey.
Airport Kiosk for Self-Service Boarder Control and Immigration Process
The boarder control and immigration counters are always the bottle-neck at any airport. The world’s top five airports are all operating well beyond the capacity they were built for. So the passenger handling capacity is always a big issue for the airport management. Passengers coming from various flights can be accommodated in different lounges, however they all converge at the border control and immigration counters. All airports have different terminals or different sections which are operating as a standalone section including all the facilities in it, another factor is that the airport management must have to provide the border control and immigration counters close to the lounges where passengers are arriving from. That is why every airport have a limited number of boarder control and immigration counters. Which could cause congestion and can easily get crowded. In order to avoid such scenarios the airport kiosks can be used for self-service boarder control and immigration process.
The airport kiosk enables the passenger to perform boarder control and immigration process completely autonomously and contact free. Which enhance their experience and improve their journey. However, pleasing the passengers is not the only need, the boarder control and the immigration also require fool proof security and absolutely 100% accurate verification. The airport kiosk which are designed for boarder control and immigration are equipped with all kind of security features. All countries have their own security standards and verification methods. Here in UAE at Dubai International Airport (DXB), Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH) or Sharjah International Airport (SHJ) usually passport scanning, retina scan and facial recognition is used for verification. The verification system is also linked with the central database which can immediately notify the authorities about any passenger if needed. The airport kiosk can provide all these verification steps autonomously and very quickly which help reducing the congestion and improve passenger experience. The self-service airport kiosk enables simple and quick boarder control and immigration process and let the airport management to accommodate more passenger within the available space and time.
Airport Kiosk for Self-Service Information Desk and Wayfinding
At any international airport like Dubai International Airport (DXB), Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH) or Sharjah International Airport (SHJ) there could be thousands of passengers at a single point of time. Especially the DXB is one of the busiest international airport in the world, the number of passengers in the lounges or waiting areas or at duty free could be staggering, in such situations, the self-service information desk or self-service wayfinding kiosks can be very helpful. People often need information and seek help from the staff. Usually what people don’t know to whom they should ask for what enquiry, sometimes the staff they are contacting is also unable to provide the information hence they direct them to the relevant staff or information desk, however, self-service information desk is an interactive kiosk which is installed on different places. All the information are categorized and arranged in a way that a passenger can easily navigate to the required information very quickly without facing any hustle. Which improves their experience and also reduce the strain from the staff and let them focus on their primary tasks.
The airports are very large places, passenger who are visiting for the first time or even frequent passengers could easily get lost. Sometimes passengers want to go to a specific location, in such situations the self-service wayfinding kiosks could be a great help. The wayfinding kiosks can provide full floor plan, searching facility and also capability to provide 3D maps, which help the passengers to easily reach to their destiny. The airport management can also use the wayfinding kiosk to make announcements or to push any update in real-time on the screen. The wayfinding self-service interactive kiosks can also be used for marketing and information purposes. As the self-service information desk and the self-service wayfinding kiosk are digital so the airport management can update the content and information in real-time and instantly. Which ensures that the user will get the up-to-date and highly accurate content and information on these airport kiosks.
Benefits of the Airport Kiosk
There are several benefits of the airport kiosk. As it is an interactive kiosk with capabilities to customize to fit in all sort of airport operation and processes, the airport management can utilize them at different places and can have so many advantages. The airport kiosks are equally effective for the airport staff and as well. For example, I have recently arrived at Sharjah International Airport (SHJ) where I had to do a PCR COVID-19 test, the process was so simple and quicker, the healthcare staff just had to scan my passport at an interactive kiosk, it automatically pull-in all the required data, and that is it. No need to fill in forms, or provide them any other information or long waiting in the queues. That is just one small application, and it could save hours or passenger’s waiting time and a lot of resources for the airport and it also improve passenger experience. Similarly wherever the airport kiosk solution is implemented it can offer different advantages.
Here are some of the benefits of commissioning an airport kiosk solution:
- Quick and autonomous check-in reduce wait time and improve passenger experience
- Passport scanning, EID card reader, biometrics, retina scan and facial recognition ensures 100% accurate verification and fool proof security
- Facilitate border control and immigration process by self-service operation
- On-screen instruction and quick access to relevant information makes it more user friendly
- Connectivity and integration with other airport systems and airline databases enable the airports to offer innovative features to maximize the usability, convenience and efficiency
- Up to 60% reduction in waiting time, results in excellent efficiency and quicker passenger journey
- Additional features and facilities improve passenger satisfaction and increase their trust
- Less initial cost, very low maintenance requirement and long life-cycle made them very cost-effective solution
- Customization enables the airports to offer unique and desired features for higher passenger satisfaction
- Data privacy and security features ensure ultimate security and help authorities
- Helps airport management and authorities to utilize human resource more effectively and efficiently which also help reducing the operational cost
- Low cost upgrade and modification with ability to repurposing
- Real-time monitoring, remote control, updated content and business intelligence gathering
By the end of the year 2021 we have witnessed rapid increase in the air travel and the same trend will continue in the year 2022. It is not only the larger runways or beautiful architecture that makes an airport good, in fact it is the passenger’s experience and their journey along with the operational capabilities that distinguishes an airport from the others. One of the biggest hurdle that any top ranking airport faces is the limited capacity and continuously increasing number of daily passengers. Large airports in UAE like Dubai International Airport (DXB), Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH) or Sharjah International Airport (SHJ) there could be thousands of passenger at a single point of time. Satisfying them all could be a very trickier task for the airport management.
The airport kiosks can be a great help and a big relief for the airport management. The interactive self-service kiosks not only boost the operational efficiency but it also reduce the passenger waiting time and it enhances their experience and journey at the airport. RSI Concepts is a leading interactive kiosk solution provider and our latest airport kiosk systems are ready to help our customers all around the world. If you want to learn more about our solutions or interested in a quote please feel free to contact us through our Contact Us page or leave a comment in the comment box below and we will get in touch with you soon.
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