Facial recognition technology could mean less waiting at airports

New facial recognition technology at London Heathrow could mean passports and boarding passes can stay in your bags

Airports are a struggle at the best of times so any technology that makes the experience quicker and easier is going to be a positive change. New facial recognition technology should allow you to drop your bags off, go through security and go straight to your plane without showing a boarding pass or passport at the gate.

The system will take a photo of you when you check in and compare it to the image on your passport, which will link it to your flight details. When you arrive at the gate where your plane is located, your face will be scanned again and automatic doors will open to allow you through – saving you the long line to have your passport/boarding pass checked.

This technology is already used to some degree when you go through automated passport control, and has already been tested at Heathrow over the summer. It is now ready for a wider roll out and should be in wider use by summer 2019.

The eventual plan for Heathrow, according to program manager Simon Wicox, is to make the airport so efficient that you won't have to break your stride as you move from the entrance all the way to the plane. We're all looking forward to that, Mr Wilcox.

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