Capital A, the holding company of the AirAsia Aviation Group Airlines Limited (AAAGL) and aliffiliate medium-haul airlines AirAsia X and Thai AirAsia X, is a leading travel and financial platform company in the Asia Pacific region that provides air transport, travel and lifestyle products, as well as financial services. AirAsia started as a low-cost carrier in December 2001 with core operational hubs in Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, and the Philippines. The airline group has carried more than 700 million passengers to over 160 destinations in its network across Asia, Australia, the Middle East, and the USA.
Since 2018, AirAsia has embarked on a journey of transformation to become more than just an airline, with the inclusion of hotels, holidays, activities, online shopping and more on its travel, lifestyle and e-commerce platform, the airasia Super App. A special effort has been made to digitize the whole experience for AirAsia guests so that they can access a wide variety of services from the convenience of one app on their own mobile devices.
As part of its digital transformation strategy, AirAsia’s goal to provide a seamless travel experience for its passengers quickly became a top priority during the pandemic. The airline’s main aim was to introduce contactless check-in/boarding procedures to mitigate risks related to Covid-19. A digital and remote flight check-in process was implemented to replace the former established procedure at an airport desk, safeguarding passengers and streamlining the experience at the same time.
To achieve this goal, AirAsia launched a touchless identification and contactless self clearance platform, based on facial recognition technology. Called FACES (Fast Airport Clearance Experience System), the revolutionary system is now available on the airasia Super App.
The implementation of FACES technology would never have been complete without the capability of automatic ID verification. The technology needed to be able to perform all the necessary checks in a few seconds and allow for data validation from IDs with as little need for physical contact between the document and airport staff as possible, contributing to the safety and wellbeing of everyone involved in the operation. Given AirAsia’s vast network of destinations and its international scale, it was also vital to ensure the technology met the airline’s scope, and to provide global coverage of identity documents so that any passenger, regardless of the state that issued their document, would be able to enjoy the ease of FACES.
Market research results and industry recommendations led AirAsia to choose the Regula Document Reader SDK. It was embedded in the airasia Super App and became its core element for identity verification of AirAsia’s passengers. Regula’s solution makes the process of self check-in fast, reliable, seamless, and paperless.
The FACES enrollment procedure takes about 30 seconds from start to finish and can be done by a user themselves anytime and anywhere. All a passenger needs to do is open the airasia Super App, click FACES, snap a selfie, and upload a picture of their identity document. The authentication is done automatically, with the ID being verified by Regula Document Reader SDK. After that, a personalized QR code is generated, and the passenger is set to travel queue-free and contact-free.
To date, AirAsia has seamlessly enrolled over 600,000 passengers into the FACES program, a number which is growing fast as digital technology continues to take the hassle out of air travel in the post-Covid world.
Thanks to its advanced data capture technologies, Regula Document Reader SDK accurately extracts and cross-compares identity data in a matter of seconds. This cross-comparison of personal information collected from both visual and machine-readable zones helps spot alterations of data and detect forgeries.
Having opted for Regula Document Reader SDK, AirAsia has also benefited from the world’s largest identity document template database, which Regula maintains in-house. This database contains 11,000 templates for IDs from 248 countries and territories, meaning the chances of FACES dealing with an unrecognizable document are close to zero.
As part of our strategy to fully digitize the airline, we aim to provide a seamless travel process for our guests. The digital and contactless procedure, which includes online check-in anywhere, anytime with a mere click of a button, is a definitive gamechanger and also a strong way to restore confidence in air travel. The solution provided by Regula greatly complements our overall vision to become a leading travel and lifestyle super app and our transformation strategy to automate across all key customer touch points. Regula is a strong strategic partner which is always at hand to support us promptly whenever service is needed.Kesavan Sivanandam, Chief Airport and Customer Experience Officer
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