Going on holiday is always exciting, but the initial prep that needs to be done is a bit of a bore. From packing to picking up last minute essentials, sometimes you have to go through some pretty mundane tasks before you can lay out on the beach. But luckily, it sounds as though one aspect of your journey could be made far easier very soon.
The Sun has reported that Heathrow airport will soon introduce facial recognition technology, meaning you will not have to repetitively show your passport and boarding documents at different stages through your airport journey (think, at the check in desk, at security, etc).
The project, which will reportedly cost a cool £50 million, could reduce a passenger’s journey through the airport ‘up to one-third.’ Passengers will still have to bring their passports to the airport, however.
This is not the first time Heathrow has used facial recognition, despite it previously only being on a much smaller scale. For example, it’s utilised when passengers enter the UK border at the biometric e-gates. It has also been trialled within domestic flights within the country.
A spokesperson for Heathrow told The Sun that the change will work when passengers link their passport to their facial biometric information:
‘Passengers will still need to travel with their passports when using the end-to-end biometric technology,’ they explained.
‘At the start of the journey they’ll need to link their passport with their facial biometric information to allow them to register for the service. The change means that at different touchpoints – for example before security and at departure gates – passengers will not need to present several different travel documents over and over again.’
While to many this may sound great, it’s important to stress that Heathrow will reportedly still offer passengers to opt out of this modern techy approach to flying, and stick to traditional security methods at the airport.