Air Canada Introduces Facial Biometrics At SFO

Anna Kroupina, Open Jaw

Air Canada via Facebook.

Air Canada has expanded its touchless boarding experience by making facial biometrics available to customers flying out of SFO, with plans to progressively roll it out for customers at other U.S. airports. AC says it's the first Canadian airline to offer biometric boarding.

"Air Canada has introduced numerous touchless processes throughout the customer journey, and we are pleased to now offer an optional, innovative biometric boarding choice for customers departing SFO that is seamless, time-saving and convenient while reducing contact and processing time," said Andrew Yiu, Vice President, Product at Air Canada. 

With biometric boarding, customers get their photo taken at the boarding gate, which is then validated against images and documents the traveller has already provided to the government, such as passport and visa photos.

"Customers have told us they value streamlined processes and we continue to evaluate and assess additional touchless initiatives to further advance safe and secure travel while enhancing the overall travel experience,” Yiu said.

Passengers who do not wish to utilize biometric boarding may advise the gate agent, and they will board as they always have by presenting their boarding pass and passport for manual ID check and boarding processing.

Yiu said that Air Canada is also exploring biometric options for Canadian airports.

Since the beginning of the year, Air Canada has introduced numerous touchless processes throughout the customer journey, including: TouchFree Bag Check, the ability to order food from smartphones and tablets in Maple Leaf Lounges, touchless self-entry to the Air Canada Café, and the replacement of hardcopy newspapers and magazines with digital formats.

Anna Kroupina

Anna Kroupina Journalist

Anna is OJ's newest member and she joins the team as a writer/reporter. She co-writes the daily news and covers events. Although she's new to the industry, pursuing a career path in travel/tourism has been a goal since her first family road trip to the Florida Keys sparked a desire to discover the world and this exhilarating, fast-paced industry.

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