El Dorado International Airport serves Bogotá, Colombia and its surrounding areas, as the third busiest airport in Latin America. In 2018 alone, it served over 32.7 million passengers and 741,000 metric tons of cargo. The airport continues to grow as more and more Latin Americans are changing their preferences in travel.

Overall economic growth is one of the key factors in sparking this travel trend. The aviation industry is still growing in Latin America, compared to Europe and the United States. In fact, according to a statement by Juan Carlos Salazar, the director of Colombia’s civil aviation authority, Colombia foresees traffic growing to over 100 million passengers annually by 2030.

Yet with the ability to handle 40 million passengers, El Dorado International Airport needed to increase capacity and better utilize existing space through innovative modernization efforts. Alvaro Gonzalez, CEO of Operadora Aeroportuaria Internacional (OPAIN), which operates El Dorado International Airport, described the goal “to make El Dorado a world-class airport with world-class facilities and services that match its status as the gateway to Bogotá and Colombia.”

The airport sought to modernize and optimize the existing terminals and embrace new ways to increase passenger flow through security and into duty free shops. To help the airport to better meet this expanded demand, El Dorado sought out partners to provide innovations that enhance passenger processing, biometrics, as well as cybersecurity to safeguard the airport from cyber threats.

El Dorado International Airport and OPAIN selected Collins Aerospace to optimize terminal throughput, improve operational efficiencies, and leverage reliable, self-service technologies to reduce wait times and improve passenger experience. These solutions include:

  • MUSE agent-facing check-in: Manages operations and provides data analytics to improve airport efficiency.
  • Self-service Common Use check-in kiosks: Reduces wait times at check-in while freeing up airport space.
  • ARINC AviNetTM Airport connectivity: Provides passengers and airlines with security and data integrity within the airline’s virtual network space.
  • Local departure control system: Provides passenger check-in and boarding for airlines of all sizes.
  • ARINC Cybersecurity: Provides end-to-end cybersecurity coverage from alarm monitoring to on-site remediation and recovery.
  • 24/7 on-site support and help desk: Delivers immediate expertise to maintain high-quality customer service levels.

The airport is planning on adding additional systems in the very near future, including the deployment of pre-security gates together with ARINC VeriPax ™, self-service baggage drop and self-boarding gates solutions, to further enhance the passenger experience. With each of these solutions in place, passengers can experience a more secure and streamlined journey from the time they enter the airport to the time they board their plane.

“By implementing these solutions, we are able to dramatically improve the efficiency of the airport without having to physically expand our building space,” Gonzalez explained. Looking into the future, Gonzalez will rely on partners like Collins Aerospace to help gather and understand passenger data and develop solutions to provide an even better passenger experience. “That’s the future,” Gonzalez stated. “That’s the plan we have with Collins Aerospace.”

As for now, El Dorado is moving into a more modernized future equipped to keep pace with the growing demands of airline travel in Latin America, while offering a better passenger experience to those entering or departing the Latin America and Caribbean region.

Chelsea Barone

About Chelsea Barone

Chelsea is an editor for Connected Aviation Today, managing the day-to-day editorial activities. Chelsea writes for other federal government and technology industry publications. Her background lies in B2B and enterprise technology, specifically cloud computing, SaaS, travel IT, and mobile devices.