Augmented Reality at Istanbul Airport (IGA)

by | Oct 17, 2022 | Airports, Digital Transformation, Travel Tech

Augmented Reality at Istanbul Airport (IGA)


This month, IGA was chosen as the 2022 best airport in the world by Conde Nast Traveller magazine. Despite only opening in 2018, with 47.6 million passengers in the first nine months of this year IGA is Turkey’s busiest airport. Regardless of its early years being overshadowed by the global pandemic, Istanbul Airport has already crafted a reputation for itself as one of the most impressive airports in the world with its mix of striking architecture and advanced technology.

One of the most eye catching elements of the airport’s digital transformation is the use of Augmented Reality (AR). This has been mentioned in a previous article ‘Appealing to The New Generation of Passengers Through Omnichannel Retail.’ But what exactly does the AR inside IGA look like?

Within the IGA app, the airport has a 3D virtual character called CIGA accessible through passengers’ smartphone cameras. This is the first AR solution used in Turkey. CIGA accompanies passengers on their route through the airport providing directions and offering information about the stores.

As the passenger navigates the airport, CIGA highlights special offers and discounts from retailers within the airport, encouraging customer engagement with retail opportunities. The airport introduced this AR technology with the aim of transforming time spent at the airport into a unique experience. In addition to boosting retail engagement, the use of AR also aims to enhance the entertainment and loyalty elements of the airport.

Ersin Inakul, Vice President of Digital Services and Commerce at IGA said:

“Shopping using AR technology is extremely important in terms of being the first step towards the digitalization of trade at IGA Istanbul Airport. [The app] develops trade at our airport, together with our technological infrastructure and our wide scale that diversifies the services and shopping capabilities we offer our passengers. Our passengers will now be able to track dynamic campaigns and discount codes at IGA Istanbul airport through AR technology. This Marketplace, which we have created using Augmented Reality (AR) technology, will ensure a quick and easy shopping experience as well as add comfort to the shopping experience of passengers traveling from our airport.”

IGA has set its sights on becoming the world’s most digital airport, placing the terminal and the passengers’ technological needs “at the initial stages of design.” In addition to AR, the airport has queue management systems to inform passengers about waiting times, digital information screens for remote video assistance, multi-alphabet flight information displays, and a customer centric mobile application.


Article by Jess Brownlow