Delta is using facial recognition to help travelers check their bags faster at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.
The Atlanta-based airline is testing a self-service bag drop system that matches travelers with their passport photos – a first for airlines in the United States, a news release says.
The process seems pretty slick. All you have to do is go to a kiosk and print your luggage tag, attach it to your bag, and then bring your bag to a self-service bag drop machine. That's where you'll scan your boarding pass and go through the facial recognition process, Delta says.
Once your identity is confirmed, the machine will weigh your bag and submit it to the system, and you're on your way. The video below shows how it all works.
Delta says this self-service bag drop system could help process twice as many customers per hour compared to the traditional method.
"The new self-service bag drop will help free us up to devote more time and attention to our passengers who don't travel as much. They come in, they need a little bit more attention compared to, like, the business travelers who are here every day," Marcia E., a Delta representative at MSP Airport, said in the Twitter video.
If you have golf clubs, car seats or other overside bags, they'll be processed through a special lane with the help of a Delta employee.
Delta says it invested $600,000 for the four self-service bag drop machines at MSP Airport, noting it picked MSP (it's Delta's second-largest hub) for the trial because the airport is getting a lobby renovation, so "there will be an opportunity to see if this new model improves the experience for Delta customers," the release says.
The airline calls this self-service bag drop "innovative," and notes it is an industry leader when it comes to customer solutions. Other initiatives include RFID baggage handling and real-time bag tracking through the Delta mobile app, among other things.