Two thirds would welcome AI at airports

An online YouGov poll commissioned by leading inflight entertainment and passenger engagement company Spafax reveals that younger travellers want airports to use technology to enhance their airport experience, whilst older travellers are more wary.

The poll, of 2,110 respondents (gen UK adult population of 18+), asked about their wishlist for ‘an airport lounge of the future’ revealed:

  • 37 per cent of people aged 18 to 34 would play augmented reality (AR) board games with other passengers but only 9 per cent of of 55 and overs would
  • 17 per cent of 18-24-year-olds would like to try on hologram clothes at an airport, while only 6 per cent of 55 and overs would.
  • 36 per cent of women would choose, when in an airport lounge, a virtual reality (VR) preview of tourist attractions at their destination, along with the opportunity to pre-book tickets once they’d browsed

Similarly, a second GB survey, which asked respondents to envisage an upcoming long haul flight from London to New York  showed that 38 per cent wanted artificial intelligence to help with speeding up the airport process and 35 per cent wanted it to give information on news in their destination whilst on-board the flight.

A YouGov survey regarding choices for the airport lounge showed a sharp difference in both ages and regions – given the option of taking a virtual reality ‘Great Wall of China’ experience in an airport lounge where the passenger would walk on a treadmill and in real-time experience the sights of the Great Wall of China – people from Wales were the most enthusiastic, with 31 per cent saying that they would, while people from the North East of England were the least enthusiastic (16 per cent).

Charles Vine, Head of Brand Alliances at Spafax said:

“We commissioned this research to find out what the British public actually wants out of their airport and airport lounge experiences. Airport lounges in particular are evolving from faceless waiting rooms with chairs and a coffee machine to being providers of an experience in their own right. The results send a clear message to us that people want the introduction of technology, but only in a way that enhances their trip, entertains or is enjoyable.

“27 per cent were against being helped by AI for a hypothetical upcoming trip, whereas a resounding 68 per cent of the British public did want artificial intelligence AI to help them get the most out of their time at the airport – whether that be assistance navigating the airport terminals or speeding up the check in process. ”

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