London City Airport Is Creating The Ultimate Streamlined Passenger Experience

Have you ever wished you could use one smartphone application to bring up your boarding pass, track your luggage in real-time, use a map to find your airport gate and step into a pre-booked curbside taxi? According to a report by the BBC, the possibility isn’t too far off – in fact, a technology is in the early stages of testing at London City Airport.

The concept behind the technology is what’s called the “Internet of Things,” which in essence allows a variety of devices or machines to communicate with each other. So long as these individual objects can connect to the Internet, it’s feasible that an overarching platform could allow them to communicate with one another, and in turn relay that information to people. Not only will this create a better overall user experience at the airport, but if you find yourself getting held up on the way to your gate and missing your plane, your luggage won’t be boarded. Saving travelers from hassles is as simple as that!

“Everything that’s uncomfortable, inconvenient or just a pain in the neck about traveling, we’re trying to turn into a more pleasurable experience,” Robin Daniels, a representative from Living PlanIt, the tech company leading the project at the airport, told the BBC. Although this machine-to-machine communication is still in development, we’re hoping this streamlined experience catches on at all airports soon.

[Photo credit: Flickr user ​johnno_oz]

SkyWork launches Bern-London route with iPads

skywork london bern ipads

Today SkyWork, a small Swiss airline, launches service between Bern-Belp and London City. SkyWork will be the only airline connecting the two cities with a direct service. London will join a short list of destinations in the SkyWork summer schedule stable: Barcelona, Berlin, Elba, Hamburg, Ibiza, and Palma de Mallorca.

There are a number of small airlines in the Alpine region flying short-haul routes across western and central Europe, including Baboo and Air Alps. But only SkyWork among these–and, as far as I can tell, among airlines in general–offers iPads for passengers to use during flight. User reviews of the SkyWork iPads suggests that passengers can look forward to browsing apps devoted to news, destinations guides, and games. Bern-London fares start at €59 each way.

SkyWork recently announced its expansion plans for next winter. The airline will fly to Amsterdam, Belgrade, Budapest, Madrid, Rome, and Vienna from Bern-Belp beginning as early as September. Here’s hoping the airline will continue to provide iPads for passengers during flights as it expands.

Check out Gadling’s Switzerland coverage.

[Image: Flickr | edwin.11]

British Airways plans to fly the tiny Airbus A318 across the pond

British Airways has announced its plans to fly on the London City – New York JFK route starting this October.

Now, news like this normally gets ignored by us, unless it involves cool and interesting locations, neither of which are included in this announcement.

What makes this news worth writing about, is that the route will be serviced by the small Airbus A318 plane. This plane is seriously small for a transatlantic jump. It is based off the Airbus A320, the same plane used by Jetblue on their routes.

The planes will be configured with business class seating only, so British Airways is clearly hoping there is enough cash left in the banking world to fly people between London City and Wall Street.

On the way to New York, the plane will have to stop in Shannon, because London City airport is not large enough to let it take off with a full load of fuel! Shannon has the added bonus of being home to a US Customs and Immigration facility, which will prevent passengers from having to deal with long lines at JFK. This also means that BA will be flying its first ever domestic arrival at JFK.

I sure hope BA knows what they are doing, because this route sounds like more work than it is worth. Fingers crossed that their beancounters did their homework, and this won’t be the beginning of another route doomed to be canned after a few months.

Angry pilot drops his pants – asks checkpoint staff to “search this”

Get this – a pilot for Swiss International Airways decided that enough was enough at the London City Airport security checkpoint.

Instead of complying with all staff instructions, he dropped his pants and underwear, completely exposing himself, and asked whether they wanted to “search this”.

I’m not sure what part of being asked to take off his belt and shoes prompted the outburst, but a source is on record saying nobody understood why the pilot lost his cool and that he might have been “having a bad day”.

His antics meant 37 passengers were delayed for 2 hours while government staff investigated the matter.

It could have been worse though, the incident happened at the staff-only checkpoint, so no passengers had to come face to face with the half naked pilot. Of course, if this happened in the US, they probably would have emptied the terminal for fear of a terrorist penis attack.

(Via: The Sun)


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