According to Euromonitor International, international arrivals to Africa grew by 6.5 percent in 2017, to reach 18.550 million, up from 16.351 million in 2012. Key markets such as South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Mozambique, Cameroon, Mauritius, and Tanzania accounted for 70 percent of international trips to the Sub-Saharan African region supported by economic growth and tourism.
Locals, however, account for only three percent of the world’s travelers. This has been as a result of competition with international carriers leaving local airlines languishing.
Earlier this year, the African Union-initiated Single African Air Transport Market agreement. The agreement promises to industrialization, economic diversification, and development, lowering intra-Africa travel fares.
The big question is whether our local airports are future-oriented enough to manage huge traffic.
From mobile booking to self-service check-in kiosks, automated boarding gates and automated passport kiosks complete with advanced biometrics, technology now touches every stage of the passenger journey. This makes the adoption of new technologies significant in recent years as the solution for managing airports and making cities more livable.
Jomo Kenyatta International Airport is the nerve center of the East African Airspace. In 2016, the airport traffic estimates were at 7,111,501, making it one of the top 10 airports in Africa. Following the announcement of the US-direct flights set to start in September, the local aviation authority should embrace technological innovation
We can borrow a leaf from the Incheon International Airport in South Korea that has demonstrated the benefits of incorporating the robot technology. The airport has Guide Robots that roam the airport providing information and assistance to visitors and a Cleaning Robot to keep the floors impeccably clean.
“Africa is in the process of committing to the open airspace agreement encourage intra-trade opportunities. It is time to live the future, the smart cities that are in development need to become accessible. We are committed to innovations for advancement and development of the country,” said LG Marketing Manager, Moses Marji.
LG has extended its intelligent services ecosystem far beyond just the home. Through their airport bots equipped with ThinQ, making it possible for voice recognition when interacting with passengers. Since they can connect to airport servers, they are able to offer directions to various locations like restaurants or shops; provide information on boarding time with just a quick scan of the boarding. If you are late or lost, they will you escort to initial destination.