To ease long queues, London’s Gatwick Airport is testing a new technology to increase efficiency by about 10 per cent by allowing passengers to board in order of single seats, Business Insider reports. As the UK’s second-largest airport, Gatwick Airport hopes to maximise boarding efficiency by experimenting with different boarding modes and using screens to exhale each seat through a two-month trial.
(Instagram via Business Insider)
The test plan includes having the rear passenger on board first, the window passenger boarding, then the middle seat and the aisle seat. The airport says passengers can use a “large digital screen” to know their seat numbers at the time of boarding to avoid queues or congestion at the gate.
As shown in the figure, the letter A passenger is the window seat and the letter B is the middle seat. When some passengers are seen boarding first, others can also know on the big screen whether they should be ready to get up or wait patiently in the terminal.
Under the rules, passengers who miss a call will have to wait until the end of their flight before being allowed on board. “Modelling shows that test scenarios can reduce boarding time by nearly 10 per cent compared to traditional methods,” the airport said.
A spokesman for Gatwick Airport told Business Insider that the initial small test was carried out by EasyJet at gate 101.
At the same time, the airport still offers priority boarding services for first class and passengers in need of special assistance. Eventually, they will decide whether to make the boarding program universal through test results and feedback from passengers.