UK airline debuts augmented reality to ascertain bag sizesBy Ryan Noik 7 May 2019 | Categories: news
Augmented reality has finally come to the fore of making it possible to meet hand luggage requirements. Europe’s easyJet airline has become the first airline in Europe to use the technology, within its app, to enable customers to scan their cabin bag and virtually check its size before they travel to the airport.
While the airline purports to having a generous cabin bag allowance with no weight limit, the company has explained that the move is intended to enable customers to more easily ensure that their hand luggage will fit within the airline’s space requirements, and in the overhead lockers.
The new app feature, which uses Apple’s ARKit 2 technology, is available on iOS initially and sits on easyJet’s app. The app works by using augmented reality technology combined with customers’ smart phone cameras (iPhone 6S onwards). The scan itself provides an on-screen 3D box which, when combined with the phone’s camera, sizes the cabin bag and indicates whether it fits within the maximum dimensions.
There is no word yet when the app functionality will come to Android though, or whether other airlines will offer a similar functionality as well.
It’s actually a welcome move for a few reasons. Firstly, in all the airports we have been in we have yet to see any passenger stop to try fit their hand luggage in the sizing bins. Secondly, if you are already at the airport, it’s too late to find out that your bag won’t fit onboard. We can speak from personal experience that having to buy a new bag in an airport can be a highly expensive exercise.
And thirdly, if you are travelling on multiple airlines, or multiple airplanes, often the travel sizes vary from one to another, and a large cabin bag that fit in one overhead locker may not do so on another airplane. We can confidently say that no-one relishes the thought of being separated from their cabin luggage because it couldn’t fit in the aircraft.Hopefully this feature - especially if it is more widely adopted throughout the industry - will quell some of that anxiety.
“Audiences are increasingly demanding digital solutions, which improve their travel experience. We were therefore thrilled to support easyJet push the barrier of innovation once again. By incorporating this unique augmented reality feature in the app, easyJet will further reduce un-expected baggage queries on arrival,” commented Cormac Reilly, the vice president and global head of Travel Partners Solutions, who developed the feature for easyJet at Travelport.
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