WTTC Head Outlines Crucial Need to Implement Biometric Passenger ID Standards

“We have missed the opportunity to have a single solution; so it is crucial that we move faster to define the global standards for the use of technology in the traveller journey.” – Gloria Guevara, CEO, WTTC

WTTC Head Outlines Crucial Need to Implement Biometric Passenger ID Standards

The head of the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) is once again urging the air travel industry to embrace biometric technology, and is making a more urgent case than ever. WTTC CEO Gloria Guevara’s latest comments came at this week’s International Air Transport Association’s Annual General Meeting, where she outlined the urgent need to adopt technological solutions to cope with increased traveller volumes.

“We know that, according to IATA the number of air travellers will double by 2037,” she said. “And it is clear that we will not see an increase of 100% in existing infrastructure, so it is important to get this right. Those companies which support and adopt biometrics early will have a competitive advantage in the market, so it’s up to airlines to support IATA in this important task.”

The travel industry as a whole, meanwhile, needs to act now to implement interoperable standards for biometric passenger identification, Guevara said. “We have missed the opportunity to have a single solution; so it is crucial that we move faster to define the global standards for the use of technology in the traveller journey.”

It’s a stronger version, at least in tone, of the case Guevara made last year at the International Transport Forum Summit in Leipzig. And it’s one that many in the travel industry are starting to heed: Shortly after Guevara’s Leipzig speech, the WTTC and IATA officially partnered to pursue biometric passenger identity solutions. Meanwhile, a growing number of airports and airlines around the world have been implementing biometric passenger processing systems, and in some cases even biometric boarding technology that replaces boarding passes and travel documents with biometric scans.

Those who have been slow to adopt, meanwhile, may appreciate Guevara’s more urgent tone and her appeal to business benefits in her latest speech, especially now that it’s clear that so much of the competition agree with Guevara’s assertion that “Biometric technology is the future of travel.”

June 5, 2019 – by Alex Perala