Will Alaska Air’s Thumbprint Check-In Herald the Death of the Boarding Pass?
The next breakthrough in paperless airline ticketing may be under your thumb — literally.
Alaska Airlines is exploring using passengers' fingerprints to replace travel documents, driver's licenses and credit cards now needed to navigate from airport curbs to jetliner seats. If successful, it would be the first U.S. carrier to employ biometrics for boarding passes and inflight purchases and could spur wider adoption across the industry.
The digit scans are designed to shave crucial seconds at bag drops, checkpoints and passenger lounges and will likely appeal to harried travelers bogged down by long lines and shoe removal.
Multiplied across thousands of people slogging through busy concourses, the time savings would mean a "substantially faster experience," said Henry Harteveldt, a travel analyst.