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Abu Dhabi Airport to launch facial recognition in place of passport checks

No more pulling out your passport several times at the Abu Dhabi airport

Abu Dhabi Airport

Abu Dhabi Airport to launch advanced biometrics technology from check-in to boarding, which uses passenger’s facial features instead of their passports. So no more pulling out your passport several times when flying out of the UAE’s capital!

The facial recognition technology will be used at the new Midfield Terminal Building from the time a passenger arrives at the airport until they board their flight. The advanced technology is designed to reduce airport queuing times and make the journey easier for passengers by speeding up the process.

Abu Dhabi Airport
Facial recognition at airports

The technology uses smart cameras to capture an image of the passenger’s face and confirms whether they are cleared to travel. It is then used prior to boarding to avoid repeating the process of presenting their documents.

Additionally, travelers can access airport lounges using the facial recognition technology.

Testing at Abu Dhabi Airport is underway..

The advanced biometric technology will be implemented in phases.

The Abu Dhabi International Airport facial recognition is currently in the first phase of testing at the US Customs and Border Protection (USCBP) facility for Etihad flights to the US. The USCBP is also the only US immigration pre-clearance service in the region  that allows passengers to clear US immigration while they are still in Abu Dhabi.

Abu Dhabi Airport
Inside Abu Dhabi’s new Midfield Terminal

Etihad will be the first airline to implement this technology, and the move comes ahead of Etihad increasing flights to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York from four to 11 flights a week from November 15, 2022. But the technology will be rolled out across all airlines in the coming months, before being rolled out at the Midfield Terminal once it opens.

“The project will commence at Abu Dhabi International Airport and then transferred to the new Midfield Terminal in the future as we continue to be committed to enhancing the airport services and experience,” said Eng. Jamal Salem Al Dhaheri, Managing Director & CEO of Abu Dhabi Airports.

Abu Dhabi Airports is financing the system and has signed an agreement with Next50, an Abu Dhabi-based industrial AI company, to deliver the service. Next50 has been working on the system for the past seven to eight months, collaborating with stakeholders including the airport as well as airline and government entities.

The introduction of this advanced technology was announced during the day 1 of the Abu Dhabi Air Expo 2022, which is hosted by Abu Dhabi Airports at Al Bateen Executive Airport from November 1 to 3.

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