How Abu Dhabi International plans to improve the air passenger experience

Abu Dhabi International Airport is trialling a new enhanced Smart Travel system with some Etihad Airways passengers

Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH) is trialling a new enhanced Smart Travel system, which aims to shorten queues and streamline the passenger experience.

The new system, developed by Abu Dhabi Airports in partnership with ConvergentAI and powered by artificial intelligence (AI),  optimises a variety of processes across the airport from check-in and immigration counter staffing to passenger arrival and departure times.

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As a part of the ongoing trial, select passengers travelling with Etihad Airways will be informed of the optimal time for them to arrive at Abu Dhabi International Airport.

By staggering passenger arrivals, the new system aims to mitigate crowding, facilitate social distancing, and shorten queues.

Overtime, as the AI-powered system continues to operate, it will become smarter and further streamline passenger journeys through the airport, said Shareef Al Hashmi, CEO of Abu Dhabi Airports.

He added: “Innovation and digitalisation are key to the achievement of our vision of becoming the world’s leading airports group… The enhancement of Abu Dhabi International Airport’s Smart Travel system is a significant step in our journey of continuous improvement and innovation as we shape the future airport experience.”

John Barton, chief information officer, said: “Minimising queuing at airports is key to safeguarding passenger health and wellbeing and streamlining operations, which is why we are working with our airline partners and ConvergentAI to precisely model our passengers’ journeys and improve them at every step.”

“By enabling passengers to quickly and seamlessly transition through check-in, immigration and boarding, we are providing them with more time to enjoy everything Abu Dhabi International Airport has to offer, from first-rate dining to superior duty-free offerings,” added Barton.

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By using AI to monitor real-time imagery of aircraft, special programmes are being developed to guide on-ground teams to complete certain actions, such as the unloading of luggage or the refuelling of an aircraft at optimal times.

Abu Dhabi International Airport is also exploring the integration of AI into its safety and security systems, enabling the automated monitoring of camera feeds of the airport apron, the area in which aircraft manoeuvre and park.

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