Test at Schiphol: boarding quickly and easily using facial recognition


Schiphol Airport has started a test with KLM involving “biometric boarding” – one-off boarding without showing your boarding pass or passport. Passengers board the aircraft quickly and easily using a special door that recognises passengers by their faces. 

With the help of this test, Schiphol and KLM want to study the technology of facial recognition – the system’s speed, reliability, and user-friendliness. They will also examine the boarding process and the passenger experience. The ultimate aim is to make the boarding process as quick and easy as possible for our passengers. The test period will last a minimum of three months.

It will take place at a specially selected gate at the airport. Boarding with facial recognition will require passengers to register first. In the waiting area near the gate, there will be a special registration kiosk. KLM staff will assist the passengers.

Registration involves scanning the passport, the boarding pass, and the passenger’s face. In the interest of privacy, the data will be used only for the test. Following boarding, all personal data will be erased. All data storage in the registration kiosk is erased after ten hours.

Schiphol and its partners are constantly working to develop innovations and create smart ways of improving ease of travel, speed, and airport processes. The airport aims to become “Leading Digital Airport” in 2018. This test is just one step in that direction. Over the past two years, the airport’s collaboration with KLM and governmental authorities has resulted in the introduction of the very first security scan for passengers, crew and staff, and the new Security Lane in 2015. Right now, there is a test involving carry-on baggage scanning which allows passengers to leave their laptops and liquids in their bags. In the time to come, innovative technologies will be tested on a regular basis and, when proven successful, will be put to use.