SITA, the air transport industry ‘s technology provider, sheds new light on how technology allows airports and airlines to restart operations safely and allows to enforce new hygiene initiatives that restore customer confidence following the COVID- 19 long shutdown.
Speaking after the Aviation Week webinar of Airline and Airport vice-president Sebastien Fabre, SITA said: ‘In recent weeks airlines all around the globe have tentatively take to the air, reflecting the resumption of our network’s activities and improved baggage volumes, up 55% a month in May, with record volumes low.’
But the recovery would be slow. Fabre noticed. “To successfully walk this rope, and sail back into the sky for viable passenger volumes, airports and airlines, new data from government and health officials must assimilate, adapt operations at once and Automate Processes Per Travelers’ Experience while balancing the economic strains of slow customer demand.
SITA has implemented solutions to allow passengers to use their mobile device as a remote control for contact points, such as autobag drops and check-in kiosks. “At San Francisco Airport, for example, we have a SITA Flex which enables full mobile and touch-free passenger travel, allowing passengers to print mobile tags on self-service bag points from their mobile phones.” Fabre added.
He noted that the technology is necessary for airlines and airports to comply with new and rapidly evolving regulations to restore passenger confidence in flight. A new approach to passenger management will be necessary for new preventive measures to reduce risks at and on the airport.
Fabre said that SITA has quickly developed new solutions, supplements short-term hygiene measures, such as the use of masks and gloves, to address the challenges. There were three main areas of emphasis for these solutions:
Distancing: SITA will ensure the correct distancing between passengers at key points around the airport using real-time monitoring technology and predictive analytics. Further strategic preparation would also benefit from predictive analytics.
Hygiene and sanitation: by preventing contact in main touchpoints, SITA helps reduce the risk of infection. Passengers are no longer needed to contact a kiosk or surface with a combination of biometric and mobile solutions to navigate their journey from their devices.
Health checks: Governments will be able to use advanced passenger processing and analyze passage data by leveraging SITA risk management solutions to identify and alleviate potential health risks, in addition to integrating health or thermal checks into key points of contact such as check-in kiosks.
He noted that SITA uses technology for remotely controlling self-service devices like a mobile phone kiosk, which eliminates the need to touch any airport equipment, for airports that do not have a mobile platform.
Springall indicated that SITA has helped governments all over the world with the pre-clearance of its Advance Passenger Screening Checks in support of COVID-19, which has been sponsored for example by a South American Airport during the earliest part of the pandemic.
SITA believes that a harmonized government-to – government approach to data management is critical to mitigate resurgence risk.