Wondering how long it's going to take to get through that airport security line?
Washington Dulles International Airport became the first U.S. airport earlier this month to display real-time wait times at its security checkpoints. Available in the main terminal, monitors show the estimated time to clear the east and west checkpoints.
The technology was designed by French company Blue Eye Video. It uses video recognition analytics to constantly measure the number of people in line and the number of people completing the security screening process. From this data, wait times for the airport’s security mezzanine checkpoints are calculated in real time. The monitors debuted on Aug. 9.
The information is also provided on the airport authority's website, which is mobile-friendly, so passengers can also use smartphones to check the wait times. Passing through either checkpoint at Dulles clears you into a common area from which you can get to any gate. This enables you to pick the entrance with the fastest time.
“Real-time data puts the power in our customers’ hands,” says Chris Browne, vice president and Dulles airport manager, in a press release. “Dulles passengers can use this new service to eliminate the guesswork in selecting which checkpoint to use.”
It's a move I'm hoping more airports make while we wait for faster airport security checkpoints slated to appear in the decades ahead. Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport displays real-time wait estimates through its website. Updates are not available through terminal monitors, though you can request to have time estimates emailed to you.