MIA Introduces Facial Recognition Boarding on Lufthansa Flights

MIA Introduces Facial Recognition Boarding on Lufthansa Flights

A year after unveiling a biometric arrivals concourse, the Miami International Airport (MIA) is still working to improve the passenger experience. The airport has announced the launch of a biometric departure platform that will use facial recognition to eliminate the need for a passport and a boarding pass.

The new system will confirm passenger identity with a photo taken at the boarding gate, the result of a partnership between MIA, SITA, US Customs and Border Protection, and Lufthansa, which is currently the only airline to offer the service. However, MIA plans to expand biometric boarding capabilities to other airlines later in the year.

“MIA continues to explore innovative ways of streamlining and expediting the travel experience for visitors to our community,” added Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez. “I look forward to seeing biometric exit technology expand throughout MIA and enhance the level of customer service for its passengers.”

“Biometric boarding is an efficient and hassle-free form of travel that helps speed up the boarding process while also increasing security,” said Lufthansa’s Dr. Bjoern Becker. “We are thrilled to be the launch airline that introduces this technological advancement at MIA.”

According to the press release, the biometric arrivals concourse has cut wait times by as much as 80 percent. All of the partners are expecting similar efficiency gains from the new departures program, which could drastically reduce the amount of hassle associated with airline travel.

Facial recognition technology has already been trialed on international flights in Boston and New York. The latest announcement indicates that airport biometrics will continue to trend upward in 2019.  

February 5, 2019 – by Eric Weiss