Now everyone can board an AirAsia flight with their face

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Facial recognition is all the rage at the moment. And if you thought FaceID on the iPhone X was cool, wait till you see what AirAsia has in store for this technology. The world’s best low cost carrier has just announced FACES or Fast Airport Clearance Experience System at Senai International Airport, Johor Bahru. FACES will let passengers board their flights faster, using facial recognition technology, without having to show their boarding pass or ID at the departure gate. Cool huh?

According to SoyaCincau who were at the launch, the automated gate system uses Gunnebo’s solution that has a claimed [UPDATED: 11.08AM @ 07.02.2018] 98% 80% success rate. Apparently, it works with twins too, but this has yet to be tested by AirAsia.

FACES currently works only with adults aged 18 and above. Passengers below the age, or for passengers travelling with infants, or those requiring additional assistance will still need to go through the standard screening and boarding process.

Just to be clear, FACES is meant for boarding of flights only, and does not replace security screening or immigration checks.

Currently, the standard boarding process for 180 passengers is around 11-13 minutes. With FACES, it takes 9-11 minutes. You may argue that this is a minute amount, but let’s consider this—some AirAsia flights have a turnaround time of just 25 minutes, so every second counts.

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With FACES, each passenger is cleared between 1.5 to 4 seconds.

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FACES is self-serviced, so you’ll likely not see this two pretty ladies when you’re enrolling.

Get started with FACES

To start using FACES, you’ll need to enrol yourself in the system using your MyKad or passport. The process takes just 30 seconds at the kiosk, and this can be done before or after the check-in counter has closed.

You’ll only need to do this once, unless you’ve changed your MyKad or passport. FACES is open also to foreigners with a valid passport.

Once done, you can proceed to security and immigration clearance, then to the boarding gates.

Note that you’ll still need to have a printed boarding pass or mobile QR code, as this is required by the authorities.

An Asia first

With FACES, AirAsia is the first airline in Asia to implement facial recognition for boarding. The feature is currently available only at Senai International Airport in Johor Bahru. It has one FACES enrolment kiosk at the self-checkin area, and three auto boarding gates (Gate 1, 2, 3) at the airport. The service is available for both domestic and international AirAsia flights from Senai.

AirAsia plans to roll out this feature to all airports nationwide soon.

Check out the video below:

Photo credit: SoyaCincau

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