Australian airline QANTAS is trailing new smart card-based check-in system designed to cut down on time spent in queues, according to The Australian.
Qantas will also be testing personal electronic bag tags for upper-tier frequent fliers that can automatically store details of up to four flights.
The trial, which involves QANTAS’ partners IBM, Fujitsu, Telstra, Optus and Amadeus, is set to start in Perth next week with the issuance of frequent flyer smart cards to a select group of premium flyers.
The new cards, which can also be used as a boarding pass, contain contactless chips that allow passengers to check in by simply going up to a kiosk and tapping the cards against a reader, whittling the entire check-in process down to a scant five seconds, according to The Australian.
In addition to speedier check-in time, the new technology will allow for automated excess baggage payment, which is bad news for flyers but good news for airlines that have come to rely on excess baggage fees for much needed revenue, according to The Australian.
QANTAS is looking to launch the system by November 2010 in Sydney.
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