“BER Runway” – Virtual Queuing in Berlin with Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER), Copenhagen Optimization, and CLEAR
BER has launched a free virtual queuing programme known as BER Runway. The CEO of Copenhagen Optimization, Kasper Hounsgaard described the virtual queue as “a game changer in the personalised airport experience.”
BER is the first European airport and eighth airport globally to offer the virtual queueing system. This system has already been implemented in the US and Canada and was met with great success.
To enable passengers to plan their pre-flight journey with more accuracy, BER Runaway allows travellers to reserve a security time slot for themselves and their party. The new system should reduce waiting times at the start of the security check to five to ten minutes. The slots are valid ten minutes before and after the specified time and are predicted to “benefit the commercial part of business” whilst improving operations through “nudging passengers to arrive outside the peak periods” (Kasper Hounsgaard).
Accelerated by COVID-19, many airports have been introducing virtual queues in different forms. Some are experimenting with QR codes which add passengers to a virtual queue, enabling them to grab food or go shopping in pre-security amenities. Others, like BER Runway are introducing ways to get passengers into queues at specific times. Both aim to ease lengthy queues and increase spending at retail shops pre-screening.
COO of Berlin Brandenburg Airport, Thomas Hoff Andersson will be speaking at this year’s World Aviation Festival on digital airport operations. The COO will be using BER as a case study to explore how the airport’s operations were reformed through international airport experience.
Article by Jess Brownlow