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The Future of Travel Is Almost Here, Thanks to AI

“Our travel experience is about to get seamless, contactless, pleasant, fast, and personalized,” claims Rana Nawas, the lead author of a new study from Oliver Wyman Forum. As advances in artificial intelligence continue, there’s a chance that airport travel will be completely different by the end of the decade, which could boost sustainability. 

You can’t travel without airports, but they’re often a stressful part of the process.  Thanks to technology, airports could become less stressful—and maybe even enjoyable. 

Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport are both testing virtual queue lines that allow passengers to skip TSA screenings. Detroit Metropolitan Airport has added a new departure board called Parallel Reality, which uses AI, including facial recognition, to give you individualized updates on your departures and arrivals. Other airports are hoping to elevate the experience by having food deliveries to your gate or adding more shopping and leisure activity options as you wait for your plane to arrive.

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Image by Nitat Termmee

Technology will lessen the strain from bottle-necked security lines and open the door for more pleasurable pursuits instead. By 2040, there may even be touchless digital IDs that could replace passports, containing important information regarding your travels and immigration status.

Though contactless travel will make vacations and work trips easier, there are valid privacy and security concerns about global data-sharing. Nawas says: “Governments across the world [will] need to accept each other’s security clearances.” Passengers will most likely need to opt in to these sorts of contactless services, at least for the time being.

Are you excited for the future of airports?

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