They come in a variety of styles and purposes, but airport kiosks are sure to be a part of your next trip
Airports all over the world are tightening security, which tends to mean longer wait times. To combat this, airports started using kiosks to cut back on wait times and improve the passenger experience at the airport. In recent years, along with airport check-in, airport kiosks are being utilized to provided better services for check-out, wayfinding, advertising, internet access and more. It would actually be more surprising if you didn’t use a form of self-service technology the next time you flew. Here are some of the ways you can see self-service technology at work in airports and travel industry!
Check-in kiosks are being used in airports to decrease check-in times and costs. By automating these simple tasks, airport staff can focus more on security of passengers and more complex tasks to improve customer service. JFK airport is notoriously known as the airport with some of the worst wait times. In response, JFK airport implemented check-in kiosks and saw the largest decrease in wait times as a result. JFK saw,“average wait times dropping by 30 percent from 27 minutes to under 20 minutes” (Global Gateway Alliance).
This is how these kiosks are used. The passenger scans the code on their printed ticket, checks off their name and baggage information, confirms flight, and then is ready to pass through security. This process usually can take on average 40 minutes, but with a kiosk it can be done in two.
The purpose of a check-out kiosk in an airport is to inform the passenger on the way out from the airport. These airport kiosks have information regarding hotels, transportation, food and drink, and entertainment in the city and nearby. In some cases, there is a phone on the kiosk to book a room, call a taxi, or make a reservation. This can simplify the chaotic nature of pick-ups at terminals and decrease confusion.
Wayfinding and Information
There are “trains, planes, and automobiles” all over the place at the airport, and they can be hard to find at times. Terminal train schedules can change at any minute, planes change gates and terminals, and taxis don’t wait up. Having a digital display is the solution for this problem, as it can be changed at any moment to reflect accurate departures. Information, news headlines, and emergency signals can also be displayed on the kiosk. This way the passenger can plan their transportation accordingly and keep updated.
Similar to what you might see at a mall, these large standing kiosks are great for shopping and food courts. It can advertise shops, services, and restaurants within the airport to inform passengers about the many fun things they can do during their 2 hour layover. Really, these kiosks can show internal advertisement of relevant amenities, or it can show external advertisements (maybe about the city the airport is in, local businesses, upcoming city events, etc) Maybe you want to advertise that the bathroom in Terminal A is by the fast food chain on the left. That’s the great thing about it. You choose what to advertise and it is versatile enough to change images with the click of a few buttons from any administrative computer.
As kiosk usage increases in airports, it will become the standard for airport check-in. “Continental Airlines, which deployed the first ticketing machine, now boasts a 70% usage rate among its 50 million passengers, for example. ‘It won’t be long before 90% plus will be the standard,’ says Jim Brown, a spokesman for Kinetics”.
K. COLLINS | Advanced Kiosks Writer & Editor