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101 C H A P T E R 4 Improving the passenger experience for international arriving passengers has become a major focus of many U.S. airports. U.S. airports compete with foreign airports to create a world-class customer experience, and with other U.S. airports for connecting passenger traffic, as the gateway to metropolitan areas, regions, or leisure destinations. The purpose of this chapter is to provide airport stakeholders with a set of tools to evalu- ate their international arrivals experience and identify innovative approaches to enhance that experience for passengers. Each section identifies the passenger needs and expectations and a description of the basic requirements, notable innovations, performance requirements (where applicable), and implementation considerations for each step of the international arrivals jour- ney. A journey segment evaluation tool is provided at the end of each section, highlighting the basic requirements and notable innovations. This evaluation tool is intended to facilitate dis- cussion among airport stakeholders about their current operation and identify opportunities to improve the customer experience. 4.1 Overview of International Arriving Passenger Journey Segment Figure 4-1 illustrates the journey of an international arriving passenger. It begins with pre-trip planning and includes the U.S. CBP processes. This chapter covers the international arriving passenger whose final destination is the community served by the airport at which they arrive in the United States. Arriving passengers continuing on to their final destination via a connecting flight are covered in Chapter 6. As described in Chapter 2, the journey of an international arriving passenger includes the following steps: â¢ Pre-arrival planning â¢ Arrival gate to CBP passport control â¢ Baggage claim to CBP exit control â¢ Arrivals hall â¢ Terminal arrivals roadway/ground transportation â¢ Airport egress roadway 4.1.1 Customer Needs and Expectations As described in Chapter 2, challenges experienced by international arriving passengers may include general travel anxiety, jet lag, travel fatigue, culture shock, and language barrier. Regard- ing anxiety among passengers arriving on an international flight, research suggests this is most likely to occur at border protection and at baggage claim. International Arriving Passengers
102 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers In the survey, arriving passengers were asked to rate the relative importance of 15 airport fea- tures. As illustrated in Figure 4-2, the most important airport features identified were short lines at security (85 percent), ease of wayfinding (79 percent), helpful staff (74 percent), short lines at customs (70 percent), and free WiFi (70 percent). The least important features to arriving pas- sengers were shopping and restaurants (35 percent), universal symbols on signs (56 percent), and flight information screens (60 percent). In the survey, arriving passengers were much more likely to rate short walking distance as being very important (62 percent) as compared to departing or connecting passengers (39 per- cent to 43 percent). This is likely due to the effects of jet lag and travel fatigue, especially by those arriving on an overseas flight. On the path from the gate to border protection, international travelers require information about the necessary documents and procedures for processing. In addition, arriving passengers need to be guided to the appropriate queue for processing. There are many different traveler cat- egories and it can be overwhelming if all options are presented at the same time. As described in Section 2.2, people can easily be overwhelmed when faced with more than two choices at a time. In the survey, arriving passengers were asked to rate their satisfaction with walking distance, wait times, and ease of wayfinding. Nearly one in five passengers said that the walking distance from the arrival gate to customs was fair or poor (18 percent) and that the wait time at customs was fair or Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-1. International arriving passenger journey segment. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team 85% 79% 74% 70% 70% 60% 56% 35% Short Lines at Security Ease of Wayfinding Helpful Staff Short Lines at Customs Free WiFi FIDS Universal Symbols Shopping + Restaurants Figure 4-2. International arriving passengers: most important airport features.
International Arriving Passengers 103 poor (19 percent). By comparison, 7 percent said that the ease of finding their way from the plane to the arrivals hall was fair or poor. For the most part, the airports where surveys were carried out did not provide information to passengers about walking distances or real-time estimates of wait times. Although a great deal of research has been carried out on wait times at U.S. ports of entry (e.g., Roberts et al. 2014; Ryan et al. 2007) and on ways of measuring wait times at U.S. ports of entry (e.g., Sabean and Jones 2008), little has been done to evaluate the satisfaction of those seeking entry into the United States. Research in emergency departments at hospitals have found that satisfaction levels were higher when patients were given an expected wait time to see a physician (Mowen et al. 1993), but other research has demonstrated that perceived wait time has a greater influence on passenger satisfaction than actual wait time (Thompson et al. 1996). Providing information, projecting quality, and managing wait time perceptions and expectations may be more effective than reducing actual wait time. Along the route from passport control to baggage claim, passengers require information to iden- tify the baggage claim carousel associated with their flight and then find their way to the correct carousel. It may be challenging for passengers to locate the correct baggage claim carousel at larger airports with many baggage carousels in a wide space with views obstructed by structural columns. 4.2 Pre-Trip Planning International travelers not familiar with their arrival airport may choose to gather informa- tion about their arrival in advance of their trip to reduce the anxiety of being in an unfamiliar place. This may include gathering information about services available at the airport, the border protection process, and ground transportation options. 4.2.1 Key Activities Pre-arrivals planning primarily involves the use of one or more websites or mobile apps to collect the information that customers need to plan their airport journey. These websites could include the following: â¢ Arrival airport website or mobile app â¢ Airline website or mobile app â¢ U.S. CBP website 4.2.2 Customer Service Person-to-person customer service during the pre-arrivals planning journey segment is very limited. Customers may choose to contact the airport or airline directly to receive additional information about their airport journey. They may also contact the appropriate U.S. or foreign government agencies to confirm that they have they appropriate travel documentation. 4.2.3 Physical Environment The pre-arrivals planning does not occur at the arrival airport and therefore there are no physical environment considerations. 4.2.4 Information Dissemination As highlighted in Chapter 3, airports are using their website to prepare customers for their upcoming journey with newer, advanced tools available in web design with a further focus on mobile device integration. As the travel date nears for an upcoming voyage and the anxiety that
104 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers may come with it emerges, the customer (more now than ever) is accustomed to turn to their computer for the information needed to set them at ease, especially when arriving at an unfamil- iar airport. Customers can use the website tools to determine the location of a connecting gate and the best way to connect, especially in a larger airport that may require changing terminals. Using the airport website in advance of their journey can provide a traveler with the location of baggage claim or ground transportation in an unfamiliar airport. This is another way for a customer to prepare for a smooth exit. 4.2.5 Pre-Trip Planning Journey Segment Evaluation Tool Figure 4-3 provides a summary of the basic requirements and notable innovations described earlier for the pre-trip planning journey segment. The items are provided in chronological order to give an indication of when or where they should occur in the customer experience for this journey segment. 4.3 Arrival Gate to Passport Control The arrival gate to passport control journey begins when passengers deplane at the arrival gate and ends when they reach the passport control hall. 4.3.1 Key Activities The arrival gate to passport control includes the following activities: â¢ Deplane aircraft â¢ Receive wheelchair assistance (if necessary) â¢ Receive connecting flight information and quick connect identification (if applicable) â¢ Enter the arrivals corridor â¢ Travel to the passport control hall â¢ Queuing and passport control 4.3.2 Customer Needs and Expectations Walking Distances: Short walking distances are very important to international arriving pas- sengers as this group is likely to experience jet lag and travel fatigue, in particular passengers on long-haul flights who may have spent up to 16 hours on a flight spanning multiple time zones. Travel fatigue causes passengers to feel disoriented and decreases their ability to carry out the physical and mental tasks essential to navigate from the gate to passport control. In the survey, all passengers were asked to rate how important short walking distances were at any airport using a three-point scale (very important, somewhat important, or not important). Overall, 41 percent of passengers said that short walking distances were very important, 48 percent said that short walking distances were somewhat important, and 11 percent said short walk- ing distances were not important (see Figure 4-4). However, as shown in Figure 4-5, arriving Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-3. Pre-trip planning journey segment evaluation tool.
International Arriving Passengers 105 passengers were much more likely to say that short walking distances were very impor- tant (62 percent) as compared to departing passengers (39 percent) or connecting passengers (39 percent to 43 percent). Wait times: When arriving at passport control passengers can expect they will have to wait in line, but long lines can lead to feelings of frustrating and dissatisfaction. ACRP Report 55 conducted research on passenger level of service and found a strong correlation between time in queue and passenger perception ratings. In the survey, all passengers were asked to rate how important short lines at border con- trol were at any airport using a three-point scale (very important, somewhat important, or not important). Overall, 72 percent of passengers said that short lines at border control were very important, 26 percent said short lines were somewhat important, and two percent said short lines were not important. There was little difference between the perceptions of arriving passengers as compared to departing and connecting passengers with respect to the importance of short lines at border control (range between 67 percent to 74 percent). 4.3.3 Customer Service Person-to-person customer service during the arrivals gate to passport control journey segment consists of receiving information from the airline about connecting flight status, interacting with Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-4. Overall passenger ratings for importance of short walking distances. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-5. Passenger ratings for importance of short walking distances, by journey segment.
106 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers wheelchair service providers, and receiving directional information at key points along the way and interaction with CBP officers during primary inspection. Customer services also are provided in the form of passport control processing options, including trusted traveler programs and fast connect lanes. Basic Requirements Greeting Customers: The initial person-to-person interaction should occur as customers exit the passenger loading bridge and enter the terminal facility. Customers who have short connec- tion times due to flight delays or other flight schedule issues should be given proper identifica- tion to allow for expedited processing at passport control. They should also receive information about the time and departure gate location of the connecting flight so that they have a better understanding of how to reach their departure gate. Wheelchair Services: Wheelchair service providers should be positioned just outside the pas- senger loading bridge or immediately inside the terminal to provide customer assistance at the earliest point possible. Because customers requiring wheelchair assistance may be elderly or have very little English language capabilities, the wheelchair service providers should utilize print or digital signs with the customer name in English and their native language. Free WiFi: The availability of free WiFi is important to many customers, especially foreign visitors who do not have U.S.-based mobile phones, to let family and friends know that they have arrived safely. Customer Service Staff: Additional customer service may be necessary along the arrivals cor- ridor, particularly if there are numerous building level changes or intersections where passengers have to make a decision about which way to go. While providing customer service staff for this purpose is often referred to as herding sheep, practical experience indicates that large groups of passengers, such as those deplaning from a large aircraft, tend to follow those in front of them and ignore informational signage. Customer service staff is also required in the passport control hall to guide passengers to the appropriate queue. The recent introduction of APC kiosks, MPC, and the evolving eligibility for these services drives the need for customer service staff to be available to guide customers to the appropriate queue and to help first-time customers understand how to use the kiosks. Frequent traveler services, such as Global Entry, require minimal customer service staff support because those customers travel regularly and are familiar with the process. The customer service staff assigned to the passport control hall should have a wide variety of foreign language capabilities to answer questions about the entry documentation, baggage retrieval, ground transportation, or connecting flights. A notable customer service innovation at Boston Logan International Airport identified through the research was the delivery of water and snacks to customers who had to wait in long queues at passport control. While queue times at passport control have been reduced greatly with the deployment of APC kiosks, the variable nature of international flights may create large surges of passengers that overload the capacity of the passport control processor, resulting in wait times that could easily exceed one hour. Providing customers with some form of amenity could substantially improve their experience. At JFK International Airport, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) provides a language hotline for customers whose native language is not spoken by the customer service agents in the terminal.
International Arriving Passengers 107 Two of the U.S. airports that were visited, Los Angeles International (Tom Bradley Interna- tional Terminal) and Miami International (South Terminal), provide information counters at the entrance to the passport control hall. These booths are staffed by customer service agents and are primarily intended to provide customers with information to complete their entry docu- ments, such as the address for their final destination and language assistance. At Los Angeles International, the information counter is staffed by airport customer service staff, while the information counter at Miami International is staffed by representatives of the airlines for the arriving international flights. Expedited Processing Lanes: Another facet of customer service in the passport control hall is expedited processing lanes. Most U.S. airports visited provided special lanes for passengers with short connection times. The CBP port director typically established the rules for using these lanes. However, unlike at the security checkpoints, CBP does not allow for passenger segmentation based on frequent flier status or class of service. Frequent travelers are encouraged to apply for one of the trusted traveler programs, such as Global Entry, which in effect is an expedited processing program. Designated queues and head-of-line privileges for passengers in wheelchairs should be considered because flights utilizing large aircraft can easily have 30 or more customers in wheelchairs. Another customer service notable innovation is to provide dedicated one-stop processing areas for customers who do not have checked baggage to claim. This concept has been imple- mented at Dallas/Fort Worth International (Figure 4-6), Houstonâs George Bush Intercontinen- tal, and Chicago OâHare International (Figure 4-7) airports. These processing lanes also can be used for crewmembers who typically do not have checked baggage. Wait Times at Passport Control: One of the key measures of customer service in the arrival gate to passport control journey segment is wait times at passport controls. IATA recommends standards for wait time and the waiting space (IATA 2014). The IATA standards for wait time are less than 10 minutes for Over Design, 10 minutes for Optimum, and greater than 10 minutes for Suboptimum. The IATA standards for waiting space are greater than 13 square feet for Over Design, 10.8 to 13 square feet for Optimum, and less than 10.8 square feet for Suboptimum. According to information collected during the airport site visits, the target immigration wait Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-6. CBP one-stop processing (Carry E-Z) at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport.
108 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers time at Seoul Incheon International Airport, widely recognized as one of the worldâs best air- ports, is 40 minutes for 95 percent of arriving passengers. The average immigration wait time at Seoul Incheon is 11 minutes. With the widespread rollout of APC, MPC, and trusted traveler programs and increasing eligibility to use those services, U.S. airports should strive to achieve an average passport control wait time that is less than 20 minutes during the peak periods with a maximum wait time of 40 minutes. While CBP does not publish total processing time standards, U.S. airport operators and air- line stakeholders should work collaboratively with local and national CBP representatives to establish airport-specific international arriving passenger processing metrics that would inform staffing levels and operational protocols aimed at minimizing the maximum wait times. The immigration queuing area at Heathrow Airportâs Terminal 2 included a seating area for elderly customers and families adjacent to the main queue. This amenity allows one person to remain in the queue while the others wait in the seating area. While this type of amenity was not observed at any of the U.S. airports that were visited, it is worthy of discussion with the CBP port director to determine if it would be an appropriate customer service enhancement. Passport Control: Another factor that influences the customer experience is the staffing of the passport control booth, or lack thereof. The appearance of a large number of unstaffed booths during busy periods when the queues are large and the wait times are long creates an impression that no-one cares about the customer experience. While the number of pass- port control booths that must be provided is established by CBPâs Airport Technical Design Standard (ATDS) and is based on projected peak hour passenger volumes, close coordina- tion with the CBP port director should be undertaken to identify the number of booths that will be required. At some airports, such as Dallas/Fort Worth International, surplus booths were removed and APC kiosks installed in their place. In new terminal planning and design efforts, an incremental approach to inspection booth installation should be utilized to better coordinate with realistic officer staffing levels. Customer interaction with CBP officers during primary inspection is a key point of customer service. In some countries, uniformed and armed law enforcement officers may ask one or more questions during the immigration and customs inspection processes; customers may be Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-7. CBP one-stop processing (1 Stop) at Chicago OâHare International Airport.
International Arriving Passengers 109 intimidated by the very appearance of the CBP officers or by the fact that they are being ques- tioned about their travel. The attitude of CBP officers during the primary inspection has a significant influence on the customer experience. Officers are trained to be professional and courteous while determining a passengerâs admissibility into the United States. Customer feedback about the passport control process should be reviewed frequently and possible improvements should be discussed with the CBP port director and other key stakeholders. Implementation Considerations Basic amenities at passport control: Providing basic amenities requires very little pre-planning and can be delivered using existing customer service staff. All customers waiting in the queue will benefit and the initiative is relevant for all international terminals because long queues can develop at any time regardless of the size of the terminal. Airport customer service would likely be responsible but the airlines serving the terminal may also be involved to authorize the expenditure or to deliver the amenities. Table 4-1 summarizes the implementation consider- ations of providing water and snacks or other basic amenities for customers waiting in long queues at passport control. Language Hotline: The primary component of the language hotline is the staff who operate the hotline. While the staff may be dedicated to the hotline, it is also possible to utilize an opera- tor who can put customers in touch with someone within the airport environment who has the necessary language skills. The operator would just need a database of airport, airline, or other entity staff who speak foreign languages. Table 4-2 provides a summary of the implementation considerations for providing a language hotline. Table 4-1. Implementation considerations for providing basic amenities at passport control.
110 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Information Counter in the Passport Control Hall: The information counter consists of the customer service staff, the counter itself, and the information technology components necessary to provide the desired information, such as a computer with Internet connection. It may require additional customer service staff but should otherwise be relatively easy to implement. It would be beneficial to have such a service in any international arrivals terminal because there are always customers who need additional information for their entry documents or have questions about the arrivals process. The information counter gives these customers a designated location to go to for this assistance. Table 4-3 provides a summary of the implementation considerations for providing an information counter in the passport control hall. CBP One-Stop Processing: One-stop CBP processing requires changes to existing processes and facility modifications that will increase the implementation cost and timeframe. Several airport departments, the CBP port director, and likely the primary air carriers will be involved in determining if one-stop CBP processing would provide a benefit worth the cost of implementa- tion. Beyond the cost of the facility modifications and new information technology infrastruc- ture, one-stop CBP processing may require the re-assignment of CBP officers from the passport control area. This could have a detrimental effect on passenger wait times. Assuming that a significant daily volume of passengers eligible for one-stop CBP processing would be required to justify the service, this innovation is primarily applicable to large international terminals with Table 4-2. Implementation considerations for a language hotline.
International Arriving Passengers 111 Table 4-3. Implementation considerations for an information counter in the passport control hall. multiple carriers or hub carrier terminals. Table 4-4 provides a summary of the implementation considerations for providing one-stop CBP processing. 4.3.4 Physical Environment The journey from the arrival gate to the passport control hall is a key opportunity to make a great first impression on the customer. The physical environment plays a major role in creating the customer experience. Along this journey segment, the physical environment considerations consist of the architecture and interior design, restrooms, moving walkways or automated peo- ple movers, and building level changes. Basic Requirements Architecture and Interior Design: The architecture and interior design of the international arrivals corridor is an important element of creating the first impression of the airport. The arriv- als corridor should allow for natural light and provide views of the exterior (airfield or surround- ing area) or the interior of the terminal. If natural light or interior views are not possible within the international arrivals corridor due to its location inside the terminal or underground, artwork should be used to provide a visual distraction to customers as they travel through the corridor. Figures 4-8 and 4-9 provide examples of artwork utilized in international arrivals corridors. The physical environment of the passport control hall is another important factor in the cus- tomer experience. Because most customers may spend quite some time in queue for processing, the architecture and interior design should provide natural light and elements of visual interest
112 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Table 4-4. Implementation considerations for CBP one-stop processing. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-8. Miami International Airport North Terminal arrivals corridor artwork.
International Arriving Passengers 113 to distract passengers while they wait. The passport control hall at Dallas/Fort Worth Inter- national Airportâs Terminal D (see Figure 4-10) is a good example of how architecture, interior design, and artwork are used to create a unique environment that establishes a sense of place and is welcoming. Walking Distances. Walking distances often are considered in the design of international arrivals facilities and the walking distance from arrival gate to passport control is a key metric. While the site for the new facility will likely dictate the walking distances, the design should try to minimize it as much as possible. Where walking distances longer than 1,000 feet are required, mechanical assistance such as moving walkways and motorized carts should be provided. The moving walkways should be located as close to the key intersection, such as a security checkpoint, as possible to benefit the greatest number of customers (particularly the elderly), including those whose gate is less than 1,000 feet from the intersection. According to ACRP Report 37, for distances of over 2,000 feet between the furthest gate and the passport control hall, automated people mover systems should be strongly considered, specifically if the furthest gates are in a remote concourse. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-9. Los Angeles International Airport Tom Bradley International Terminal arrivals corridor artwork. Source: DFW International Airport. Accessed at http://dfwairport.mediaroom.com/image-gallery. Figure 4-10. Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport Terminal D passport control hall.
114 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Restrooms: Restrooms are an important component of the arrival gate to passport control journey. ACRP Report 130: Guidebook for Airport Terminal Restroom Planning and Design pro- vides guidance on the design of restrooms in airport terminals. Because many customers have just completed long intercontinental flights, the restrooms in the arrivals corridor should include a full complement of amenities, including family restrooms and nursing rooms. The design should reflect a calming, spa-like environment to ease the stress of long-haul air travel and give custom- ers a chance to refresh before proceeding to the border protection process. Restrooms should be located in the international arrivals corridor and at the entry to the passport control hall. Restrooms should be located adjacent to every other gate (counting only one side of a double- loaded concourse) so that customers have to walk past no more than one gate beyond the gate where they arrived. Based on a range of the wingspan of long-haul wide-body aircraft (212 feet, 5 inches for an A350-800 to 261 feet, 10 inches for an A380-800) plus the typical wingtip separation of 25 feet, this would place the restrooms about 250 to 300 feet apart. At Incheon International Airport, restrooms are located adjacent to every gate in the arrivals corridor. The restrooms should be sized according to the number and capacity of the aircraft served by the restroom. Moving Walkways: Moving walkways are a common element of the international arrivals corridor at airports worldwide. In addition, as more elderly and passengers with disabilities travel, the use of motorized carts will also become more popular. At some airports, automated people mover systems, such as at Miami International Airportâs North Terminal, are used to take customers from the arrival gate to the passport control area. The international arrivals corridor should include moving walkways, motorized carts, and potentially automated people movers to the greatest extent reasonable. When moving walkways are provided, passengers should not have to pass more than one gate (counting only one side of a double-loaded concourse) beyond the gate where they arrived to access the moving walkway. Also, duplicate moving walkways (or other contingency plans, such as electric carts) should be considered for longer distances (between 1,000 and 2,000 feet) as periodic planned and unplanned maintenance is required. CBP Facility Configuration: International arrivals facilities in the United States almost inevitably require building level changes to separate international arriving passengers from departing passengers. Some airports, such as San Francisco International, JFK Terminal 4, Chicago OâHare International, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta Internationalâs International Ter- minal, and Miami Internationalâs South Terminal have a single-level international arrivals facility. That is, the arrivals corridor, passport control, baggage claim, CBP exit control, and arrivals hall are all located on the same building level. Single-level international arrivals facilities are the most efficient from a CBP staffing standpoint and improve the customer experience because the wayfinding and passenger flow is simplified. Airports in the process of planning and designing new international arrivals facilities should strongly consider single- level configurations. Level changes immediately after deplaning are very common at airports across the world and can be accommodated as part of the fixed walkway to the loading bridge or immediately inside the terminal building, where two gates can utilize a single vertical core (i.e., escalator and elevator). For Airbus A380 and Boeing 747 aircraft, a double-level fixed walkway may be required to serve both decks in the aircraft. Within the international arrivals facility, particularly between functions such as passport con- trol and baggage claim, an additional level change may be necessary. The layout of the facility should provide an intuitive or natural passenger flow to minimize the need for signage to guide
International Arriving Passengers 115 passengers to the next step. A change in the building level located after baggage claim is undesir- able because many customers will use baggage carts to transport checked baggage. Large capacity elevators, such as those described in ACRP Report 10: Innovations for Airport Terminal Facilities, should be considered if a building level change is required after customers have claimed their checked baggage. A notable innovation for the physical environment in the arrivals gate to passport control journey segment is the reconfiguration of the CBP process to allow customers to claim their checked baggage first (bags first) and then complete the passport control and CBP exit control procedures at one location. This process has been implemented at Austin-Bergstrom Interna- tional Airport and is the basis of the design for the new Terminal 1 international arrivals facility at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. This concept is also being considered at larger airports, such as Seattle-Tacoma International, where new international arrivals facilities are being designed. Combining passport control, secondary inspection, and exit control functions allows CBP to more efficiently deploy officer resources to increase processing capacity without increasing the number of officers. While over- all wait times are likely to be reduced substantially, customers benefit by only having to stop at one location for examination. Implementation Considerations Bags First CBP Processing: The implementation of a bags first international arrivals facility should be considered during the planning and design phase of a new international terminal. Austin-Bergstrom International was able to retrofit the existing international arrivals facility to achieve a bags first process but that may not be the case at most airports. Table 4-5 provides a summary of the implementation considerations for providing bags first CBP processing. Multiple stakeholders should be involved in the decision process because it will require the coordination of the airport, airlines, and CBP to effectively operate such a process. One of the primary concerns is the baggage delivery time since customers will reach the baggage claim area quickly because they will not have to go through passport control first. Both airports are addressing this concern by placing APC kiosks in advance of the baggage claim area so that pas- senger can begin the primary inspection process while they wait for their baggage to arrive at the carousel. 4.3.5 Information Dissemination Information provided from the arrival gate to passport control has a definitive impact on the customer experience. Basic steps like greeting passengers with a welcome graphic or simple directional sign are very helpful. When the first signs visible to the passenger include the identi- fication of the arrival terminal, passengers begin the process of knowing where they are, which helps them find their way to other areas of the airport. Other types of information can help bridge the multilingual needs of passengers to educate them about what to expect at passport control (e.g., which line is the correct queue for them). Basic Requirements Welcome Signage: The first piece of information an arriving customer needs for successful wayfinding is their starting point. A welcome sign is the first impression of the airport and is an excellent way to greet an arriving customer and present information about where they are in the airport (see Figure 4-11).
116 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Table 4-5. Implementation considerations for bags first CBP processing. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-11. Welcome signage at Heathrow Airport (left) and Chicago OâHare International Airport (right).
International Arriving Passengers 117 For airports with more than one terminal, listing the terminal name is useful, especially for connecting passengers. Signage for terminals with more than one concourse should include the concourse name to orient the customer. If the sign is digital, a welcome message can be displayed in the primary language of the arriv- ing passengers and be changed for every incoming flight. Technology can also be leveraged to post the bag claim device. Displaying the current time and date is helpful because many passen- gers seem to be unaware of the current time and or date at their new location (see Figure 4-12). As shown in Figure 4-12, static or digital signage can include the name of the city in addition to the airport name. Welcome Signs that Celebrate: The journey segment between the gate and passport control provides an opportunity to promote the airport brand and celebrate a cityâs image. Figure 4-13 illustrates how the airport name, brand, image, and âWelcomeâ are all incorporated to celebrate the arrival experience. Directional Signage: While the journey segment from gate to CBP is typically a linear one without many choices, directional signage should be included here for reassurance for unfamiliar customers. After exiting a loading bridge or gate area, there should be a sign directing customers to the passport control hall. Other destinations may be included, such as restrooms. Source: Photo courtesy of Arielle Berger Figure 4-12. Digital welcome sign with multiple languages, bag claim device number, date, time, and local weather at Incheon International Airport. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-13. Welcome sign in the arrivals corridor at Heathrow Airport Terminal 5.
118 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Directional signs should be placed at all decision points, which may include the gate area, where customers can turn left or right after exiting the loading bridge. Signs should be repeated on long corridors where the destination is not yet in sight, even if no alternate routes can be taken. This helps to reassure customers they are following the correct path. In addition to basic wayfinding, the journey segment between the gate and passport control provides an opportunity to educate the customer about what to expect and to entertain the customer. The level of design and physical amount of detailed information provided is subject to the distance from gate to CBP Primary. The longer the walking distance the more time there is to educate and entertain. Input from airport stakeholders interviewed reinforced the need for signage in the interna- tional arrivals facility to be bold to help herd and navigate passengers through the space and the passport control process. Having the information presented in a variety of languages can be helpful because it can be challenging to provide staff with the necessary multilingual skills. As shown in Figure 4-14, the number of languages displayed on static signage varies between the airports visited. For additional information on the planning and design of directional signage for airports, refer to ACRP Report 52. Depending on the walking distance from the gate to passport control, there may be oppor- tunities to educate and enhance the customer experience along the way. The most important of these two opportunities is how to educate the customer about what to expect (e.g., documents required, queue options, etc.) when they arrive at passport control (see Figure 4-15). Under- standing what to expect reduces anxiety and improves customer satisfaction. Color-Coded Signage in the Passport Control Hall: A color-coded signage system along the arrivals corridor helps educate customers by associating entry status with a particular color and the information is provided in seven different languages. The queuing area in the passport control hall is arranged by the entry status, which corresponds to the color-coded signage (see Figure 4-16). According to input from airport stakeholders, the color-coded signage along with support from the passenger service representatives (PSRs) has been very helpful in accommodating the tremendous growth in passenger volumes. There is a lot less passenger confusion, which also reduces the amount of assistance required, which lessens the burden on manpower to staff the passport control area. The color-coded signage program at BOS evolved with the Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-14. Number of languages displayed on static signage.
International Arriving Passengers 119 Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-15. Multilingual signage in the arrivals corridor at Boston Logan International Airport. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-16. Color-coded signage leading to passport control at Boston Logan International Airport. passenger responses so it was crucial that it was flexible and could be easily modified based on their feedback. The further segregation of passengers in the passport control hall (U.S. citizens, Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA), foreign visitors, lawful permanent residents, acces- sibility needs etc.) has made the queuing process more complex. The implementation of the
120 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers color-coded signage orients passengers with their specific processing requirements and the matching signage color is clearly displayed in the passport control hall to help guide passengers into the appropriate queue. Passport Control Hall Signage: When planning a signage program for a CBP area, air- port planners and/or wayfinding consultants must reference the CBP ATDS. All CBP sig- nage must be approved in advance by CBP during the design stage. The goal of the standards is to âmake a significant contribution to operational efficiency by minimizing confusion among travelers and permitting traffic to move expeditiously through the CBP passenger processing facility.â The general requirements for signage in passport control are dictated in the ATDS. The document also covers general requirements for secondary processing, the sterile corridor and entrances leading to passport control, and international baggage claim. Additional detailed guid- ance is available from CBP headquarters. Required artwork (including the seal of the Depart- ment of Homeland Security) should be obtained from the local CBP. Chapter 4 in the ATDS gives an overview of four categories of signage: wayfinding, identifica- tion, notification, and statutory/regulatory. Wayfinding signs: These signs should provide directions to specific areas within the CBP passenger processing facility. The ATDS states the use of CBP approved terminology is required to maintain consistency. However, at the U.S. airports surveyed there are a variety of terms that appear on signage in the United States. This includes U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), passport control, Federal Inspection Service and CBP Primary Inspection. The overseas airports surveyed use terminology such as customs, Arrivals, or Arrivals Immigration. The dif- ferences between U.S. and overseas airports and lack of consistency between airports within the United States can be a source of confusion for passengers. Likewise, there are varying approaches to using symbols for CBP processes on wayfinding signage. Some U.S. airports use only the three U.S. symbols shown in Figure 4-17, while others use symbols and text. The term passport control when paired with the immigration passport control symbol at U.S. airports communicates a consistent message to the unfamiliar traveler so they know what to Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-17. Examples of signs with CBP symbols only and CBP symbol with text.
International Arriving Passengers 121 expect at the first major stop in this journey segment. Figure 4-18 shows a comparison of symbols used at U.S. and overseas airports. Stakeholders at the airports visited understand the challenges of finding ways to success- fully communicate information to non-English speaking passengers. For example, recruiting personnel with bi-lingual and/or multilingual skills provides verbal communication. Imple- menting signage with bi-lingual messaging paired with the appropriate symbol also helps communicate information visually. Digital dynamic signage can communicate information virtually by tailoring pre-programmed messages as a versatile, efficient, and cost-effective method to meet the communication needs of passengers speaking a number of different languages. Expedited Entry Programs: If the path to Expedited Entry program kiosks is unclear, signage may be required to guide customers. Proper symbology for these signs should be considered carefully. Life in the 21st century presents an ongoing challenge to keep pace with advances in technology which airports are not immune from and nor are their passengers. While the recent deployment of APC and MPC improves the customer experience at passport control, there has not been a symbol set developed and tested for comprehension to reflect this technology. In an attempt to fill this void, the blue symbol in Figure 4-19 (the logo on the MPC website) has been picked-up by airports offering MPC processing as the default symbol. However, the symbol does not clearly indicate the actions taken when using MPC. The second symbol in Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-18. Comparison of CBP symbols. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team 1. MPC Software 2. ATL-MPC Symbol 3. DFW-APC Symbol 4. ATL-APC Symbol Figure 4-19. Symbols for MPC and APC.
122 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Figure 4-19 is a proactive effort by Atlanta International Airport to create a sensible symbol to fill the void created by this new technology by including the phone/tablet in the symbol. The third and fourth symbols in Figure 4-19 show a similar issue for APC. This research illustrates how new processes and technology can create a gap in how to best communicate this informa- tion using a visual medium. Wayfinding signs in the passport control area guide customers into the proper queues. Several of the U.S. airports surveyed improved upon the standard groupings of passenger types by hav- ing dedicated accessibility queues (see Figures 4-20 and 4-21). Typical sign messages include, but are not limited to: â¢ Visitors â¢ Permanent residents â¢ U.S. citizens â¢ Crew â¢ Diplomats â¢ ESTA travelers Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-20. Examples of CBP queue signage for accessibility. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-21. Examples of CBP queue signage.
International Arriving Passengers 123 Identification Signs: Identification signs should provide information at a desired location, including operational areas and specific rooms. Among the many requirements for identifica- tion signs, the ATDS dictates that CBP branding with the department seal be located at the CBP entrance, and a âWelcome to the United Statesâ sign be located at the entrance to the passport control hall. These guidelines can be met while also tailoring the signage to the material and color standards for the airportâs sign program (see Figures 4-22 and 4-23). Global Entry: Global Entry is a program available to U.S. citizens, lawful permanent resi- dents, citizens of Germany, the Netherlands, Panama, and South Korea and Mexican nationals. Signage should identify the banks of Global Entry kiosks to distinguish them from APC. This is a good opportunity to educate members on the use of the kiosks, and to educate nonmembers about the eligibility requirements and advantages of Global Entry (see Figure 4-24). Notification Signs: Notification signs convey specific information and instruction to pas- sengers, crewmembers, CBP, and airport/airline staff to help identify procedures, policies, and notices. Automated Passport Control: APC is available for U.S., Canadian, and eligible Visa Waiver Program international travelers. These kiosks print a receipt for each passenger that identifies the type of processing level that is warranted. The next decision point on which queue to fol- low may create potential for easy confusion. Clear signage should instruct passengers to the Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-22. Official CBP branding at Los Angeles International Airport Tom Bradley International Terminal. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-23. Examples of âWelcome to the United Statesâ signage.
124 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers appropriate queue based on the status indicated on the receipt: No âXâ or an âXâ (see Figure 4-25). These signs should display an accurate reproduction of the receipt image to assist passenger understanding of the process. The images in Figure 4-25 show that JFK International Airport Terminal 4 uses signs with a conspicuous color to tie together the separate signs as a system for making a decision. Atlanta International Airport uses the same symbol on the signage for APC and on the directional signs leading to the kiosks. Statutory/Regulatory Signs: Statutory/regulatory signs provide instructions, information, and official legal notices. Many of these are already designed and available from local CBP. These signs may not be altered. The method of display in the surveyed airports was generally fragmented (one here, one there), but Los Angeles International Airport created a clean display of multiple statutory signs in one location (see Figure 4-26). These signs are clearly visible from the APC kiosks rather than being placed on the arrivals corridor wall where customers pass by without looking. Video Walls in Passport Control Hall: While the physical environment, access to informa- tion, and fairness are the three key factors affecting customer queue experience, psychological factors also play an important role in the queuing systems because it can ease the unavoidably negative reactions of air travelers to airport delays by influencing their perceptions of the situa- tion. The customer survey shows that wait times at CBP, which vary, factor into overall customer satisfaction. An example of how to enhance the customersâ perceived wait time is in the queue at passport control at Atlanta International Airportâs International Terminal. A large video screen Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-24. Example of Global Entry identity signage. Figure 4-25. JFK International Airport Terminal 4 and Atlanta International Airport (ATL) APC kiosk receipt instructions. JFK JFK JFK ATL Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team
International Arriving Passengers 125 displays rotating images of local and regional sights in Atlanta and the state of Georgia (see Fig- ure 4-27). These types of digital media can positively influence the customer perception of queue management. Regarding the fairness factor of queue management, research shows that a snake queue is the best solution (de Neufville and Odoni 2003). Queue management associated with wait times directly affects customer satisfaction. Under- standing the factors and psychology that influences perceived wait times is important to under- stand how to improve this part of the customer experience. This includes close coordination among the entities involved in planning the necessary infrastructure, content development and management, deployment, and maintenance of the system. Implementation Considerations Welcome Wall Feature: There are three basic considerations for creating âwelcome wallâ features. Step 1 is Location: review the journey segment to locate opportunities to celebrate the arrival experience. Step 2 is Content: the criteria for content development may vary by airport, but the basics should include making it relevant, recognizable, and engaging. Figure 4-26. CBP statutory signs at LAX. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-27. Video screen in the passport control hall at Atlanta International Airportâs International Terminal. Source: Â© Chris Cunningham, Courtesy of Gresham, Smith and Partners
126 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Step 3 is the Life Cycle: content can have a shelf life so it is important to plan how and when visual content like a âwelcome wallâ will be updated. Table 4-6 provides a summary of the implementation considerations for a welcome wall feature. Color-Coded Signage System: Interviews with stakeholders from other airports found that simply color-coding the signage to help with customer flow through the passport control hall is not a guaranteed solution. Stakeholders from other airports commented that customers do not pay attention to signage and, surprisingly, U.S. citizens are more likely to follow the crowd than foreign visitors. Therefore, in evaluating what made the color-coded signage successful at Boston Logan International Airport the following attributes were noted and should be considered as part of the implementation: â¢ Colors are bold and readily distinct from each other. â¢ The information is repeated several times along the walkway from the gate to passport control. â¢ The information is posted in multiple languages based on the flight mix at the airport. â¢ Any solution like this should be based on customer input and combined with thoughtful design of how the information is presented and updated. Table 4-7 provides a summary of the implementation considerations for a color-coded sig- nage system. Video Wall in Passport Control Hall: There are three major implementation considerations with a large video wall or collage video wall including: content, content management, and infra- structure. As with any digital signage implementation, deciding what content best helps the customer in the situation takes planning before execution. In the case of the passport control hall at Atlanta International Airport, two purposes were considered, direction and entertainment. Table 4-6. Implementation considerations for a welcome wall feature.
International Arriving Passengers 127 One type of video wall was dedicated to entertaining passengers in the queue line while the other gave instruction on the appropriate queue lines in the passport control hall and kept the passengers moving through the lines. When dealing with a large number of displays work- ing as one, the software and hardware need to be configured properly to provide the level of quality expected. Determining the desired video wall size and resolution will dictate software and hardware requirements. A player with four discrete 1080p video outputs may run four screens at 1080p, while to run 4K content the same player may only be able to power one screen. The infrastructure requirements include power and data. Table 4-8 provides a summary of the implementation considerations for a video wall in the arrivals hall. 4.3.6 Arrival Gate to Passport Control Journey Segment Evaluation Tool Figure 4-28 provides a summary of the basic requirements and notable innovations described above for the arrival gate to passport control journey segment. The items are provided in chron- ological order to give an indication of when or where they should occur in the customer experi- ence for this journey segment. 4.4 Passport Control to CBP Exit Control The passport control to CBP exit control journey begins after customers complete passport control, includes claiming their checked baggage, and ends when they complete the CBP exit control interview. At that point, the customers have officially entered the United States. Table 4-7. Implementation considerations for a color-coded signage system.
128 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Table 4-8. Implementation considerations for video walls in the passport control hall. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-28. Arrival gate to passport control journey segment evaluation tool.
International Arriving Passengers 129 4.4.1 Key Activities The passport control to CBP exit control journey includes the following activities: â¢ Proceed from passport control to baggage claim hall â¢ Determine which baggage claim carousel is assigned to their flight â¢ Locate claim device â¢ Claim checked baggage â¢ Proceed to CBP exit control â¢ Queuing and CBP exit control interview â¢ Exit CBP area 4.4.2 Customer Needs and Expectations Many passengers experience anxiety while waiting for the baggage to arrive at baggage claim, in particular those in the process of transferring to a connecting flight. Research conducted for ACRP Report 55 has shown that the longer the wait times, the greater the dissatisfaction experienced by airport passengers. To alleviate the anxiety and anticipation of passengers waiting for their bags to arrive, some airports provide video monitors to distract and entertain passengers as they wait for their baggage. At many airports outside the United States, amenities such as information counters, coffee shops, money exchange kiosks, and duty free shops are provided in the baggage claim area to distract passengers while they wait for their baggage. 4.4.3 Customer Service Person-to-person customer service during the passport control to CBP exit control journey segment is relatively limited as customers guide themselves to the baggage claim carousel for their flight. Information delivery via signage is the primary means of customer service during this journey segment. Other elements of the customer experience include baggage delivery wait times, free baggage carts, baggage porter services and airline baggage service offices. Basic Requirements Baggage Claim Carousel Identification: In the baggage area, the first element of customer expe- rience is identifying the baggage carousel assigned to their flight. Upon entering the baggage claim area, FIDS should display flight information with the carousel assignment. Each carousel should be clearly identified with signage that can easily be seen from the entrance to the baggage claim hall. Wait Times: This key element of the customer experience pertains to the amount of time customers wait for checked baggage to be delivered to the assigned baggage carousel. With the introduction of APC, MPC, and trusted traveler programs at many U.S. airports, customers are arriving at the baggage carousel sooner because the wait times at passport control have been reduced. Based on the target average passport control wait time established in the previous sec- tion, the target delivery time for the first checked bag should be 20 minutes or less after arrival with the last checked bag arriving no later than 40 minutes after arrival. Achieving this target should limit the wait times in the baggage claim area to 20 minutes or less for almost every customer. The IATA Optimum level of service recommendation is less than 15 min- utes for narrowbody aircraft and less than 25 minutes for wide-body aircraft for delivery of the first bag for economy class passengers (2014). Delivery of baggage for first and business class passengers typically occurs much quicker than economy passengers because those bags are given priority and those passengers are usually the first off the plane and the first through passport control.
130 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Elimination of Baggage Claim and Recheck for Connecting Passengers: As indicated in Chapter 2, the elimination of baggage claim and recheck for international-to-international con- necting passengers has been implemented in a few U.S. airports. Eliminating baggage claim and recheck for some or all international-to-domestic connecting passengers would have a profound impact on the customer experience. While this policy has not yet been implemented in the United States, airport stakeholders should continue to discuss the opportunity with their local and national CBP representatives to ascertain the challenges and requirements associated with this change in policy and operations. ACRP Report 61 provides a detailed description of the vari- ous methods for implementing this innovative approach. Seating: Since it is not likely that waiting in the baggage claim area can be eliminated alto- gether, providing seating for customers is an important customer service consideration. This is especially beneficial for the elderly or passengers with disabilities who may be traveling with someone who can retrieve their baggage while they wait. The seating should be adjacent to the carousels so that parties can remain within sight of each other. Baggage Carts: Baggage carts are provided free-of-charge in almost every international arriv- als facility across the world, including those in the United States. This creates an expectation that the baggage carts will be readily available at no cost to the customer. While baggage carts are commonly located between the claim carousels, airport should consider staging them at the entry to the baggage claim hall so that customers can more conveniently get a cart when they enter the baggage claim hall. This will also reduce the spacing required between the carousels and allow for more efficient replenishment of the carts that are being returned. Baggage Porters: Many foreign airports provide for-hire baggage porters in the baggage claim area. This amenity is not common at U.S. airports; however, some customers may expect these services to be available. Airports should routinely survey customers to determine if this service is commonly requested. Customers flying on certain airlines may have a higher expectation for baggage porter services due to the more generous check bag allowances of those airlines. Elderly passengers may also have a higher desire to utilize baggage porters. Amenities and Services: CBP regulations prohibit the provision of amenities and services in the international baggage claim hall as they have the potential to impede the ability of CBP offi- cers to conduct observations and passenger screening. Amenities such as information counters, coffee shops, money exchange kiosks, and duty free shops are available in many airports outside the United States. Since this decision is made at the national level, airport stakeholders should consider working with their industry representatives to discuss the possibility of providing some level of amenities in the international baggage claim hall. Airline Baggage Services: Airline baggage services are another component of the customer experience in the baggage claim area. At large international terminals in the United States, it is more common for the hub carriers or primary foreign airlines to provide baggage services within the baggage claim area. However, airlines that provide only one or two international flights per day generally do not provide baggage services in the baggage claim area but rather provide that service at the ticketing counters. The key consideration is that customers are provided with the information that they need to contact their airline to inquire about the status of their baggage. For airlines that do not provide baggage services in the baggage claim hall, an information kiosk should be provided that has the local and global contact information for each of the airlines serving that terminal. CBP Exit Control: The CBP exit control process can be more stressful for some customers than the passport control process due to the questions about items being brought into the United States. A common point of confusion, especially for foreign visitors, is the need to stop for the exit con- trol interview as many foreign countries utilize a self-declaration and random inspection process
International Arriving Passengers 131 where passengers with nothing to declare proceed through the exit without an interview and those who do have something to declare may be subject to an interview and search. Random interviews are conducted for passengers identifying that they have nothing to declare. CBP is testing a self- declaration model for exit control so airports considering modification to this component of the arrivals process should discuss this potential change with their CBP port director. 4.4.4 Physical Environment The physical environment of the baggage claim hall should facilitate ease of movement through the facility, identification of the appropriate baggage claim carousel, collection of checked bag- gage, and location of the CBP exit control. Basic Requirements Line of Sight and Natural Wayfinding: International baggage claim halls are typically very large spaces with several claim carousels. Entry to the baggage claim hall should allow for a clear line of sight to each carousel, which should be prominently identified (usually by number). Natural wayfinding is most effective if the entry to the hall is located in the center baggage claim hall or along a perimeter corridor that passes by each claim carousel. The customer should be able to see the CBP exit control point from the entry so they know where to go after they claim their checked baggage. All elements of the interior designâspecifically the floor and ceiling pat- terns, lighting, and the structural gridâshould convey the direction customers should flow from the entry to the CBP exit control. Carousel Layout: Appropriate spacing should be provided between the claim carousels to allow for baggage carts and seating. IATA recommends 36 to 43 feet separation (edge to edge) for baggage retrieval, circulation, and baggage cart staging with additional space to accommodate seating (2014). Seating adds approximately five feet of width for each row of seats. If the baggage cart staging is consolidated at the entry to the baggage claim hall, the carousel spacing could be reduced by 3 to 6 feet. Most airport terminals in the United States have carousels spaced at 50 feet to 60 feet on center, which is in the middle of the range recommended by IATA. Carousel Sizing: Long-haul international flights often have higher checked bag allowances than short-haul international and domestic flights. Load factors can also be high, especially during the peak travel months. Splitting a flight onto two carousels or using porters to remove bags from a single carousel that is too small creates confusion for customers and greatly diminishes the experi- ence. The use of two carousels for one flight should be considered only when flights can be split into first and business class on one carousel and economy on the second carousel. IATA recom- mends that carousels for wide-body aircraft provide 230 to 295 feet of presentation length and carousels for narrowbody aircraft provide 130 to 230 feet of presentation length (2014). Carousels for double-deck wide-body aircraft, such as the A380 or 747-800 with very high bag to passenger ratios (greater than 1.5 bags per passenger) should use the upper limits (IATA 2014). Carousel Type: Baggage claim carousels for international arrivals facilities in the United States are predominantly remote-fed sloped-plate carousels (see Figure 4-29). These carousels provide the highest amount of baggage storage capacity per foot of presentation length due to the ability for the baggage to be double-stacked on the carousel. However, removing baggage that is double-stacked is not an easy task, particularly for the elderly and disabled. Remote-fed flat-plate devices (see Figure 4-30) are available but do not provide the same amount of baggage storage capacity. This design, however, makes the removal of baggage less arduous. These types of devices are in use at several terminals at Heathrow Airport. The planning and design of new international arrivals facilities should consider these issues.
132 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Restrooms: The baggage claim hall should include restrooms for customers who may have to wait for checked baggage or may have bypassed the restrooms in the arrivals corridor or passport control hall. The restrooms will likely be located on the perimeter of the baggage claim hall and should be positioned so customers do not have to walk the entire length of the hall to reach them. Baggage Cart Return: The baggage claim hall design should incorporate dedicated corridors for returning baggage carts so that the public entrances and exits do not have to be used as pathways for returning carts. Baggage carts are returned and restocked throughout the day so interference with the passenger flow should be minimized. While this element is not associated with the customer experience, it can affect the airportâs strategy for returning the baggage carts. CBP Exit Control: The implementation of APC and MPC at passport control can negatively affect baggage claim and CBP exit control wait times. With more customers at the baggage claim carousel prior to the baggage being delivered, the surge of customers leaving the carousels and proceeding to CBP exit control has increased, creating long queues at CBP exit control. Many airports provide separate queues at CBP exit control for crew, Global Entry, U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, and foreign visitors. Sufficient queuing area should be provided that does not interfere with the circulation around the baggage claim carousels. CBP is testing a self-declaration Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-29. Example of a remote-fed sloped- plate baggage claim carousel at Chicago OâHare International Airport Terminal 5. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-30. Remote-fed flat-plate baggage claim carousel at Heathrow Airport Terminal 2.
International Arriving Passengers 133 process where the CBP exit control interview would not be necessary for customers with noth- ing to declare. Airports in the process of planning and designing new or significantly renovated international arrivals facilities should contact their CBP port director to determine the best approach for conducting the exit control process because it will affect the spatial requirements for that process. Implementation Considerations Remote-Fed Flat-Plate Baggage Claim Carousel: The replacement of remote-fed slope-plate baggage carousels with remote-fed flat-plate baggage carousels in an existing terminal is highly unlikely due to the decrease in capacity. The best opportunity to incorporate these devices is dur- ing the planning and design phases because they will affect the capacity and size of the baggage claim hall. The airport planners and designers should work with the airlines to determine if these types of devices are suited for the operations. Table 4-9 provides a summary of the implementa- tion considerations for implementing remote-fed flat-plate baggage carousels. 4.4.5 Information Dissemination Basic Requirements Statutory/Regulatory Signs: All CBP signage must have the advance approval of CBP dur- ing the design stage. The CBP ATDS includes a list of information required to post in this area. Statutory/regulatory signs are unique to the CBP facility providing international travelers with statutory/regulatory instructions, information, and official legal notices (see Figure 4-31). The content of a statutory/regulatory sign cannot be altered and must be presented in its entirety. Table 4-9. Implementation considerations for remote-fed flat-plate baggage claim carousels.
134 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers Directional Signage: The majority of bag claim areas within CBP do not have a direct line of sight to the outside, making the task of orienting oneself non-intuitive. Therefore, passengers must rely on the signage to find their way out of the bag claim area. Observations made during site visits show the signage at all five overseas airports include âExitâ as part of the wayfinding system in the bag- gage claim area. Of the eight U.S. airports visited, seven use the word âExitâ on the signage guiding customers to the CBP exit; each has varying levels of consistency. This is important, because CBP officials have noted that some foreign non-English speaking travelers mistake the emergency exits for the airport exit. Seven of the eight U.S. airports include âExitâ messaging in the bag claim area and all overseas airports visited clearly emphasize the âExitâ message in the bag claim area. This issue can be further complicated by the differences between U.S. standard life safety sign versus life safety signage used in other countries (see Figure 4-32). Many other countries use some version of the ISO standard, a symbol developed the in late 1970s by Japanese designer Yukio Ota and adopted for international use in 1985. Exit is a difficult message to convey via a pictogram. The wide range of different representa- tion used at the airports visited illustrate this point (Figure 4-33). Given the differences in sym- bology used for EXIT the signage guiding customers on how to exit from an airside to a landside area should use both the word EXIT as the primary means of communication and if a symbol is used it should be a supporting element only. Baggage Information Displays: The basic primary content required for baggage informa- tion displays (BIDs) is the city of origin, flight number, airline, and bag claim device number. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-31. Example of CBP required statutory signs at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. NFPA Standard Exit Sign ISO Standard Exit Sign Source: NFPA and ISO Figure 4-32. Life safety sign comparison.
International Arriving Passengers 135 Some of the airports visited, like Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, provide additional remarks that indicate when the baggage is expected to arrive at the device or if all the bags have been delivered (see Figure 4-34). These remarks also toggle between English and Dutch. The BIDs at AMS also include information such as time, date, and what to do if there are problems with baggage. The net result is a solution that adds value to the customer experience. Directly on or over each claim device, and in other areas within the baggage claim area as appropriate, signs provide more processing instructions and direct passengers to CBP secondary processing and exit control located at the head of the main facility exit lanes. Beyond exit control, signs direct passengers to the main exit, baggage recheck, connecting flights, and ground transportation as required. Alternate Content to educate customers about whatâs next in their journey: Arriving pas- sengers with checked bag(s) are a captive audience while waiting at baggage claim. Airports can make use of this dwell time to provide additional information to educate the customer about the next segment of their journey. Static signage, digital signage, or a combination of both located strategically above or on the carousels can cycle between the primary content and alternate con- tent (see Figure 4-35). The key factor in signage placement is to maintain clear sight lines during peak times when the bag carousels are the most crowded. CBP Exit Control: After retrieving baggage, passengers proceed to the CBP exit podium. Directly over each exit lane a sign must be located with a message per CBP. A sign viewed by Figure 4-33. Exit symbols. AIGA AMS LHR MUC PEK Source: AIGA and ACRP 03-35 Research Team Notes: AIGA = American Institute of Graphic Arts; AMS = Amsterdam Airport Schiphol; LHR = Heathrow Airport; MUC = Munich Airport; PEK = Beijing Capital International Airport. Figure 4-34. BIDs at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team
136 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers passengers just prior to exiting the CBP facility should express appreciation for their coopera- tion. Content will be provided by CBP. Connecting Flight versus Exit: While the physical space of CBP varies in size and configu- ration from one airport to the other, the CBP typically presents a major decision point in the passenger journey whether to exit into the United States or find a connecting flight. The way- finding provided in the CBP is important because a connecting passenger who makes a wrong turn and exits into the Arrivals Hall may have to walk a long distance to get to their connecting departure gate. Most of the circulation path through CBP is unidirectional, and multiple stakeholders clas- sified the passengers flow as herd-like. However, at this point passengers need to choose which direction to go and that decision can be adversely influenced by the large number of passengers exiting CBP at the same time. Therefore, passengers may benefit from having super-sized sig- nage directing them to boarding gates for their next departure or to the exit (see Figure 4-36). Figure 4-35. Signage with alternate content in baggage claim at JFK International Airport Terminal 4 (left) and Boston Logan International Airport (right). Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-36. Super-sized exit signage at JFK International Airport Terminal 4. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team
International Arriving Passengers 137 Implementation Considerations BIDS with Alternate Content: It is not difficult to implement this technology using a mature content management solution; however, careful thought and planning should go into the content displayed. It should be constantly monitored to ensure the customer is receiving correct, updated information. Providing too much or too little information will leave the customer frustrated. Pro- viding direction as to where more information can be obtained will draw the crowd away from the claim area, which can become easily congested during peak times. Useful information that could help arriving passengers includes weather conditions, weather and travel advisories, ground trans- portation information, and notable local and regional events. Table 4-10 provides a summary of the implementation considerations for BIDS with alternate content. As for the cost factors, if the system infrastructure is in place, developing the content could be done in house rather inexpensively. For airports with a full CMS this notable innovation is relatively simple to implement, but if it is a common platform that does not allow customization, then a full digital system deployment is required. 4.4.6 Passport Control to CBP Exit Control Journey Segment Evaluation Tool Figure 4-37 provides a summary of basic requirements and notable innovations described earlier for the baggage claim to CBP exit control journey segment. The items are in chronological Table 4-10. Implementation considerations for BIDS with alternate content.
138 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers order to give an indication of when or where they should occur in the customer experience for this journey segment. 4.5 Arrivals Hall The arrivals hall is the point at which passengers enter the non-secure area of the terminal and officially arrive at their destination. The arrivals hall includes the meeter/greeter area, informa- tion booths, ground transportation services, a business center, and concessions. The discussion in this section assumes that connecting passengers go through airline recheck prior to exiting the CBP area and then on to the location of their departing flight. Chapter 6 provides discussion about connecting passengers. 4.5.1 Key Activities The arrivals hall experience for air travel customers includes one or more of the following activities depending on the nature of their travel: â¢ Meeter/greeter connection â¢ Commercial or public ground transportation services â¢ Queuing and waiting areas for commercial or public ground transportation services â¢ Business center or other commercial services â¢ Arrivals lounge â¢ Food and beverage and retail concessions Meeters/greeters should also be considered customers in the arrivals hall. They may require the following services or amenities: â¢ Food and beverage and retail concessions â¢ Seating â¢ Arriving flight information â¢ Restrooms 4.5.2 Customer Needs and Expectations The arrivals hall can be an overwhelming experience as it is usually a larger space that pro- vides many options about available facilities and amenities. In particular, passengers arriving on Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-37. Passport control to CBP exit control journey segment evaluation tool.
International Arriving Passengers 139 a long-haul flight who do not read English could potentially experience a language barrier and culture shock in addition to travel fatigue, jet lag, and information overload. Some arriving passengers will be looking for a person or group waiting to meet and greet them at the arrivals hall. These passengers require visual cues to direct them to the meeting place. When a large number of greeters are waiting near the doors where passengers exit from passport control, it can be challenging to locate the meeting place and the party they are expecting to find. Thus, enhanced signage may be required to mark the location where arriving passengers can find the person or group waiting for them. The use of landmarks (e.g., a fountain, sculpture, etc.) can be helpful to fulfill this goal. Some arriving passengers will require information about the location of taxis, limos, hotel shuttles, or other forms of ground transportation. These passengers require wayfinding infor- mation to direct them to the appropriate location. Depending on the airport, these services may be accessed at service counters located within the terminal, just outside the doors at the curbside, at the terminal roadway on an outer island, within the parking garage, or at a remote building that can be accessed using a train or shuttle. Some passengers arriving on business require facilities such as a lounge to refresh before conducting business or a business services center to make last minute preparations before a meeting. These facilities are typically not as prominent as the more primary destinations (e.g., ground transportation, information, concessions, restrooms) and therefore may be more dif- ficult to locate. 4.5.3 Customer Service The arrivals hall provides the first impression of the destination and therefore is a crucial component of the customerâs experience. Person-to-person customer service occurs at several points during this part of the journey, including: â¢ Information counter or welcome center â¢ Ground transportation services counter(s) â¢ Food and beverage and retail concessions â¢ Commercial services â¢ Hotel counters and information boards â¢ Ground transportation service operators Other elements of the customer experience include: waiting areas or queues for commercial ground transportation services, availability of concessions and other services such as business centers or arrivals lounges. Basic Requirements Meeter/Greeter Area: In the arrivals hall, the first impression for the customer is the meeter/ greeter area or lobby. The meeter/greeter area should include some physical barrier, such as a rail, to prevent meeters and greeters from congregating around the entry doors to the arrivals hall, but allows customers space to identify the party waiting for them. Video displays providing informa- tion about the actual arrival time and estimated time for CBP processing should be considered so meeters and greeters are not waiting at the entrance to the arrivals hall for long periods of time. The size of the meeter/greeter area varies substantially from airport to airport, as it is based on a number of factors such as the social and religious culture of the customers, distance from the popula- tion center, nature of the destination (business or leisure), and common modes of ground transporta- tion. Airports should survey or interview arriving passengers on a regular basis to develop an accurate
140 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers estimate of the number of meeters and greeters per passenger. IATA (2014) provides a formula for calculating the area of the arrivals hall using a ratio of seated versus standing meeters/greeters and an assigned amount of space for each group (18.3 square feet for seated, 12.9 square feet for standing). One notable innovation observed during the research was a âwelcome signâ printer in the meeter/greeter area in Terminal 2 at Munich Airport (see Figure 4-38). This kiosk allows meeters and greeters to print their own welcome sign so that the passengers can more easily identify them as they exit the CBP area. Information Counter: Most airports provide an information counter in close proximity to the CBP exit in the Arrivals Hall where volunteers or the terminal owner/operatorâs staff provide infor- mation about ground transportation services, the surrounding region, and other customer services. Another notable customer service innovation in the arrivals hall was the Welcome Center at John F. Kennedy International Airport Terminal 4 (see Figures 4-39 and 4-40). It is located Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-38. Welcome sign kiosk at Munich Airport Terminal 2. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-39. Welcome center at JFK International Airport Terminal 4 (front view).
International Arriving Passengers 141 immediately after the exit from the CBP area and provides ample area for passengers to interact directly with airport staff. The JFK Welcome Center greets arriving passengers as they pass through CBP exit control. This easily identifiable structure creates a bright, inviting atmosphere staffed by uniformed per- sonnel. The center provides space for passengers to queue to use the courtesy telephones for ground transportation services to hotels and rental car services. A restricted internet browser provides access to Port Authority-permitted websites that support airport services. Kiosks with touch screens are programmed to provide information about local tourist attrac- tions complete with QR codes for passengers to scan to obtain additional information on their smart phones. The Welcome Center staff actively engages customers leaving the CBP areas to offer assistance. Some passengers may not realize they require assistance until passing the Welcome Center. Concessions and Amenities: Since meeters and greeters, including pre-arranged transpor- tation providers, may show up early to pick up passengers exiting the CBP area or may have longer to wait due to flight delays, a wide variety of concessions and amenities should be con- sidered for the Arrivals Hall. This might include small retail shops, coffee shops, and full-service food and beverage outlets. Seating areas should also be provided for meeters and greeters so that they are comfortable while they wait. Restrooms in the Arrivals Hall should consider the number of meeters and greeters and other service providers likely to be in the facility during the peak periods because they will be the most frequent users of the restroom facilities. Arrivals Lounge: For customers traveling for business, an arrivals lounge or short-stay hotel should be considered so that those customers can refresh before their business obligations. A business center should also be considered for any customer who needs to address business or personal matters before leaving the terminal. Money Exchange: Money exchanges and ATMs are other important services that should be provided in the Arrivals Hall. Retail and Shopping: Pharmacies and convenience stores are common at many airports out- side the United States as customers can purchase items they need before they leave the terminal. These services are particularly useful for visitors who may not know if it will be convenient to Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-40. Welcome center at JFK International Airport Terminal 4 (back view).
142 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers find certain items near where they are staying; and employees working in the terminal may prefer to pick up certain items rather than make an extra stop on the way home. Baggage Delivery Services: Arriving passengers may desire to have their baggage forwarded to their home or hotel rather than handle it themselves. Many airports outside the United States and some U.S. airports provide this service via third-party service providers. While international arriving customers will still have to claim their baggage prior to exiting the CBP area, U.S. airports should consider providing this service in the Arrivals Hall. Ground Transportation Waiting Areas: Waiting areas should be provided for customers utilizing regularly scheduled commercial or public ground transportation services because there may be a long delay between exiting the CBP area and the scheduled time of departure for the ground transportation services. In some cases, an airport may have a consolidated ground transportation center where this type of amenity is provided. The waiting area should display pertinent information about the ground transportation services, such as schedules and contact information. Courtesy phones should be considered for customers who do not have U.S.-based mobile phones. Taxi Queue: Taxi queues are another important part of the customer experience in the Arriv- als Hall. They should be well organized and sized to handle peak period traffic and located in an area that is protected from extreme outdoor environmental conditions. Ground Transportation Service Providers: Many arriving passengers interface with ground transportation service providers. As discussed in ACRP Report 157, developing a customer ser- vice training program that established expectations for all service providers is a crucial element in creating a customer service culture and enhancing the customer experience. Implementation Considerations Welcome Sign Kiosk: The installation of a welcome sign kiosk is typically a simple process requiring very little infrastructure or equipment, primarily a computer, printer, and the kiosk enclosure, along with an electrical outlet. The airport customer service department should not have to coordinate with any other stakeholders as the kiosk could be used by all meeters and greeters. Table 4-11 provides a summary of the key considerations for implementing a welcome sign kiosk. Welcome Centers: Many U.S. international terminals provide some type of information booth in the arrivals hall. A welcome center is a larger, more customer-centric version of an information booth so the implementation should primarily involve the replacement of the phys- ical infrastructure and adding some self-service technology components. The staffing for the welcome center would be the same as for an information booth. Table 4-12 provides a summary of the key considerations for implementing a welcome center. 4.5.4 Physical Environment The physical environment of the arrivals hall is just as important as the services offered. The architecture and interior design should promote a distinct sense of arrival that is reflective of the local community and the layout should facilitate ease of movement for passengers (many of whom will have baggage carts) and meeters and greeters. Basic Requirements Sense of Place and Natural Wayfinding: The architecture and interior design of the arrivals hall should promote a welcoming environment that optimizes natural light and provides a visual
International Arriving Passengers 143 Table 4-11. Implementation considerations for welcome sign kiosks. Table 4-12. Implementation considerations for welcome centers.
144 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers connection to the non-secure areas of the terminal and the outside. Regional artwork or large displays that showcase the surrounding region should be considered to give customers a distinct sense of place. The building structure and other key physical elements should situated so there are clear sight lines from the entry to the arrivals hall to the exit points for various functions. Landmarks or other distinct visual elements should be used to create âmeeting pointsâ or way- finding devices that can be used to guide passengers to various ground transportation services (see Figure 4-41). Vertical Circulation: Since many arriving international passengers use baggage carts, the primary means of vertical circulation from the arrivals hall to other arrivals functions, such as pedestrian bridges to terminal parking garages or ground transportation services, should consist of large-capacity flow-through elevators, ramps, or sloped floors. Escalators should be consid- ered only as a secondary means of vertical circulation. The elevators should be clearly marked and lit so that customers know to use them to get to the next step in their journey. The elevators and escalators should be located in pairs or banks of three or more to provide sufficient redundancy for periods of scheduled or unscheduled maintenance. They should allow passengers to continue along the path of travel without making U-turns, which can be disorient- ing. The ramps and sloped floors (shallow ramps that do not require landings) provide much greater capacity and are not subject to periodic maintenance issues; however, they take up sub- stantially more space due to the gradient requirements. Ramp slopes should be between 1:20 and 1:40 (depending on the distance) to provide a comfortable gradient that does not require assis- tance for customers in wheelchairs or is too arduous for elderly customers with baggage carts. Inclined moving walkways are used in many airports outside the United States to provide vertical transition between the arrivals hall and the terminal landside area. Special baggage carts with locking casters or automatic brakes are required for use on these devices, which typically have a steeper slope (normally 20 degrees) and therefore do not take up as much space as a ramp. Inclined moving walkways are currently prohibited in the United States by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Safety Code for Elevators, Escalators, and Related equipment, which limits the slope of a moving walkway to 12 degrees and prohibits the use of baggage carts on moving walkways (2013). Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-41. Visual elements used to facilitate wayfinding at Beijing Capital International Airport.
International Arriving Passengers 145 Arrivals Hall Configuration: The layout and size of the arrivals hall should facilitate the flow of customers and meeters and greeters. The primary circulation path should be separate from the meeter/greeter area to minimize congestion. Clear lines of sight and visual landmarks should be used to promote natural wayfinding to the greatest extent possible. 4.5.5 Information Dissemination The arrivals hall is a hub of activity. With passengers arriving in larger groups that also gener- ate equally large groups of meeter and greeter traffic, anything an airport can do to simplify and streamline this area will be of benefit. At this point, an arriving passenger may be engaged in any of the following: â¢ Meeting another party, whether personal or business. â¢ Searching for ground transportation. This can be pre-arranged or secured at the time of arrival. â¢ Looking for the path to parking lots or structures where they left their car. Basic Requirements Arrival Location: For airports with more than one terminal, the first step is to confirm/ re-confirm the terminal where the passenger will be arriving so they know where they are and can correctly communicate this information to other persons (see Figure 4-42). Having clearly identified meeter/greeter areas is also an important part of the customer expe- rience and helps provide a common point of reference (see Figure 4-43). Exit Identification: Another common point of reference associated with passenger pick-up and or meeter greeter scenarios is the exit vestibule. The inside and outside of each vestibule should use consistent terminology and have specific and unique designations (see Figure 4-44). Unique door designations also benefit airport security to know where to go when responding to a call. â¢ Terminal identification â¢ Level â¢ Unique door identification One scenario often overlooked is how do passengers arriving at the same airport but in differ- ent terminals connect to their departure gate? This can be further complicated if the passengers Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-42. Welcome to Terminal 4 signage at Heathrow Airport.
146 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers from different flights need to meet one another before the connecting flight. Can they meet on the secure side (post-security) of the terminal? Do they both have to exit security and then figure out where they are? To enhance the customer experience upon arrival, a wayfinding system should be developed to provide consistent information identifying the name and location of the arrival terminal in relation to other terminal or gate areas and an information desk (or roving information staff) strategically located along the journey segments. Access to similar information on the airport website allows the customer to engage in pre-trip planning communication and coordination. Ground Transportation Services: Similar to other journey segments, communicating ground transportation (GT) information is affected by the airport design and the GT service operation itself. The result can be challenging because of the many choices and how to distinguish the decisions to be made. Because the GT service operation is set up differently at every airport, basic decisions may include: where to go to pick a rental car; can they walk or do they need to take a train or shuttle bus to a remote rental car facility? Is there a fee to ride this shuttle? Some terminals have GT Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-43. Arrivals signage at Heathrow Airport. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-44. Door numbering signage at San Francisco International Airport.
International Arriving Passengers 147 services on one roadway level while others have them on both roadways; this can create basic wayfinding questions such as: do all passengers access all GT services using the same or different routes? For example, at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, all customers exit in the same direction to the lower level roadway GT services operation, allowing DFW to use one umbrella term of ground transportation to guide passengers to the vestibule leading to all the GT services. Once on the lower level roadway, the GT services are listed individually according to type and location (see Figure 4-45). At other airports, like Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, the GT services are accessed via multiple routes that require each GT service to be listed separately. Some airports, like Beijing Capital International Airport, utilize large fruit icons over the vestibules to help guide passengers to the correct door. Figure 4-46 provides examples of these approaches. Terminology and Symbology: Most customers know what mode of transportation they plan to use before arriving at the airport. For these customers, signage should be a confirmation of their transportation choice. However, as previously discussed, airport terminology and sym- bology can be confusing for customers with language barriers or the learned experiences and cultural influences they bring with them from other countries. Terms used to describe modes of ground transportation can be similar, e.g., shuttles versus buses versus vans, and the symbols for these services may look similar (see Figure 4-47). Some services are free while others are for hire. This information is important to customers and it should be provided in the signage. Airports with trains provide another potential source of confusion for passengers. Train ser- vice at airports can connect between terminals or remote services, such as a rental car center, Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-45. Ground transportation signage at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport.
148 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers or to mass transit train service. When separated between airside and landside this is typically not an issue, but when access to more than one type of train is provided on the landside it can be challenging to distinguish between the different train services. Airports view their trains as a branding opportu- nity; mass transit trains typically also will receive some level of branding. If the information is not properly packaged to convey the type of transit services offered, it can result in passenger confusion. For example, most mass transit train services have a distinct name, BART, DART, MARTA, etc., that does not describe its function. Therefore, consideration should be given to the terminology used on the wayfinding information. The name of the mass transit train serving the Changi Airport in Singapore is MRT; however, the airport uses the simple term of âTrain to Cityâ for the primary message on the wayfinding information (see Figure 4-48). MRT is listed as a subordinate message. 4.5.6 Arrivals Hall Journey Segment Evaluation Tool Figure 4-49 provides a summary of the basic requirements and notable innovations described earlier for the arrivals hall journey segment. The items are provided in chronological order to Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-46. Ground transportation signage at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (left) and Beijing Capital Airport (right). Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-47. Ground transportation information at Changi Airport.
International Arriving Passengers 149 give an indication of when or where they should occur in the customer experience for this journey segment. 4.6 Terminal Arrivals Roadway/Ground Transportation The terminal arrivals roadway or ground transportation services often provide the last impres- sion of the customerâs arrival experience. This portion of the arriving passenger journey segment primarily involves wayfinding and pedestrian interaction with private and commercial/public vehicles and courtesy shuttles. 4.6.1 Key Activities The terminal arrivals roadway/ground transportation experience for air travel customers includes one of the following activities, depending on the nature of their travel: â¢ Private vehicle pick-up â¢ Terminal parking â¢ Courtesy shuttle to parking or hotel Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-48. Train to City messaging at Changi Airport. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-49. Arrivals hall journey segment evaluation tool.
150 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers â¢ Commercial ground transportation â¢ Public ground transportation 4.6.2 Customer Needs and Expectations Depending on the size of the airport, the curbside area just outside the terminal building can be a busy area with a multitude of services occupying specific locations along the length of the terminal building and sometimes spanning several islands. For unfamiliar passengers who may be jet lagged or fatigued, it can be challenging to find the locations for passenger pick-up, taxi stand, limo stand, airport shuttles, public transportation, and other shuttles. It is generally help- ful to provide a directory map near each exit door to orient passengers as to where they are and where a service is located. Key considerations include a general level of illumination, crosswalk visibility, and visibility of signs associated with each service. At some airports, the arrivals curbside is located on a lower level covered by the departures roadway above. Thus, even in the daylight artificial lighting is required to sufficiently illuminate the curbside area. Lower levels of light can make it difficult for passengers to see and read signs at a distance and it can be difficult for drivers to see pedestrians wearing dark clothing. Crosswalks are a passenger safety feature. These marked areas identify where drivers should expect to see pedestrians crossing the road. Higher levels of light are required in these areas and the pavement markings and signs directing drivers should be well identified. Signs to identify the location of each service need to be large enough, with sufficient letter height to be noticed and read from distances ranging from 50 to 100 feet or more depending on the distance from the terminal exits and the number of islands at curbside. A general rule of thumb is that the legibility should be 30 feet per inch or better. For example, if the sign is to be read at a distance of 120 feet, the letter height should be a minimum of 4 inches tall. The signs should have sufficient contrast between the letters and the background color. Color-coded signs can help passengers identify their location more quickly. 4.6.3 Customer Service The terminal arrivals roadway and ground transportation segment of the customersâ arrival experience will likely be influenced by their interaction with the following entities responsible for maintaining orderly operations and providing courteous service: â¢ Law enforcement officers â¢ Ground transportation managers â¢ Ground transportation service providers Basic Requirements Traffic Enforcement: Traffic enforcement for private vehicles on the international terminal arrivals roadway is particularly important to prevent long dwell times associated with waiting for customers or meeters spending excessive time reuniting with customers. Airport customer ser- vice and operations should work with law enforcement officers to establish the best approach for handling these situations, from a person-to-person interaction and through operational policies. Having law enforcement constantly barking at private vehicle operators to move off the curb is not an acceptable customer service and could be viewed as offensive by many foreign cultures. Ground Transportation Management: Ground transportation managers are responsible for maintaining orderly queues and reviewing operating schedules to make sure the various modes of transportation are performing as scheduled. They also should receive appropriate customer
International Arriving Passengers 151 service training and be provided with access to information since many customers need addi- tional details about their ground transportation arrangements or have questions about their destination. Ground Transportation Service Providers: The airport customer service training program should include the ground transportation service providers authorized to serve the airport. At a minimum, customer service expectations should be communicated to the service providers and they should be included in any incentive or reward programs that the airport operator maintains for other service providers within the terminal. Ground Transportation Information: Customer service on the terminal arrivals road- way and ground transportation services includes providing information about scheduled and unscheduled ground transportation services, including the route schedules, booking informa- tion, typical fares, and tipping suggestions. This is especially helpful for first time foreign visitors who may be from countries with very different ground transportation operations. Providing this information gives customers confidence that they are not getting âripped offâ by the operators. Digital Passenger Advisory Signage: In many transit centers, such as those at Boston Logan International Airport (see Figure 4-50) and Baltimore-Washington International Airport, pas- senger advisory signage is provided to inform passengers when to expect the next airport shuttle bus. At Baltimore-Washington International Airport, over 50 LED signs were installed at the bus shelters and bus stops, in assorted parking lots and garages, and along the arrivals road. The signage is connected to an Automatic Vehicle Location system using GPS and cellular technol- ogy to transmit the locations of buses for real-time updates. While this is helpful information for all customers, those in the northern regions of the United States particularly appreciate this information during the winter months, which allows them to find a warm place to wait with the confidence they will not miss their bus. Implementation Considerations Digital Passenger Advisory Signage: Because many vendors have a mature, proven product known in the marketplace, implementing the technology is not difficult; it is the installation. With construction projects, there are implications to consider such as infrastructure routing for power and communications or the use of solar and cellular. The buses utilize GPS and cellular to transmit location to a headend system, which updates the signage. This is typically considered a capital improvement project for the airport. Operations and engineering is involved with the design and commission of the project and airport maintenance usually maintains the system. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-50. Digital passenger advisory signage at Boston Logan International Airport.
152 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers After procuring the initial license for the software, the annual ongoing costs will include con- tracts to maintain the GPS and cellular connections and specialized product maintenance, i.e., software and route updates. Table 4-13 provides a summary of implementation considerations for passenger advisory signage. 4.6.4 Physical Environment The physical environment of the terminal arrivals roadway and ground transportation area should minimize pedestrianâvehicle conflicts and promote a sense of safety and security. Basic Requirements Pedestrian Safety: Pedestrian safety is the most important consideration for the physical environ- ment of the terminal arrivals roadway and ground transportation area. Most terminal arrivals road- ways are split for commercial and private vehicle use. Commercial vehicles and courtesy shuttles are typically on the inner roadway (i.e., closest to the terminal exit). These operators are familiar with the arrival roadway operations and are more observant of pedestrians crossing the road to get to the private vehicle curb. It also allows passengers to wait for their vehicles inside the terminal as opposed to a remote curb. Locating private vehicles on the outer roadway also helps reduce congestion on the inner roadway. Private vehicles also need easy access to hourly parking typically located in the terminal parking garage. While each airport has a unique terminal roadway configuration, airport customer service, operations, and planning should work collaboratively to determine the best road- way allocation that can accommodate demand and considers the customer experience. Table 4-13. Implementation considerations for digital passenger advisory signage.
International Arriving Passengers 153 Grade-separated pedestrian crossings should be provided to the terminal parking areas. This increases the capacity of the terminal arrivals roadway by reducing pedestrian crossing and improves the customer experience. Lighting: Because most terminal arrival roadways are located below the departures roadway, the use of natural light should be maximized. Artificial lighting can be used to reduce or elimi- nate the feeling of being in a dark tunnel. Covered Loading Areas: If the arrivals roadway is not located below the departures roadway, a canopy should be provided to cover at least one-and-a-half vehicle lanes (approximately 18 to 20 feet) from the edge of the curb to protect meeters and customers from inclement weather. Hourly Parking: Hourly parking (two hours or less) should be provided close in to the ter- minal exit near the Arrivals Hall so meeters and greeters can park while waiting for their party. This parking area is commonly located in the terminal parking garage. Cell Phone Lots: Most U.S. airports provide cell phone lots that allow meeters and greeters to wait in their car until they get confirmation that their arriving party is at the terminal curb. Cell phone lots are especially beneficial for meeters and greeters waiting for international arriving passengers who may get delayed in the CBP area. 4.6.5 Information Dissemination The arrivals curbside area at most airports tends to be quite congested, especially at peak travel periods. Safety is a primary concern because pedestrians and vehicular traffic occupy the same space. Therefore, appropriate safety and regulatory signage should be implemented as required. Passengers being picked up by private vehicle need to communicate to the driver where they are on the curbside. The basic information needed by the passenger includes the terminal and ter- minal level, and some unique identifier along the curbside. This identifier can be a door number, airline name, âPassenger Pick Upâ zone signage, etc. Passengers looking for courtesy shuttles, commercial ground transportation or public ground transportation may need directional signage accompanied by signage that identifies each zone. The majority of the U.S. airport visited use some level of color-coding to help organize the differ- ent pick-up point zones along the curbside so passengers know where to wait (see Figure 4-51). 4.6.6 Terminal Arrivals Roadway/Ground Transportation Journey Segment Evaluation Tool Figure 4-52 provides a summary of the basic requirements and notable innovations described earlier for the terminal arrivals roadway/ground transportation journey segment. The items are provided in chronological order to indicate when or where they should occur in the customer experience journey segment. 4.7 Airport Egress Roadway The airport egress roadway provides access from the airport to the community that the airport serves. While many customers may utilize commercial or public ground transportation services or be picked-up by family or friends, some customers will rent a car and use the egress roadway for the first time. Some drivers may be driving a car in the United States for the first time. Clear information should be provided along the roadway so drivers can connect to the major arterial roadways.
154 Guidelines for Improving Airport Services for International Customers 4.7.1 Customer Needs and Expectations Drivers leaving the airport bring with them all of their experiences and expectations about roadway design and traffic control. Passengers leaving the parking garage may be familiar with the roadway network or they may be driving a rental car with no prior experience driving in the area. It is assumed that the design driver is unfamiliar with the area and driving under less than ideal conditions, such as at night or fatigued. The roadway network should be easy to understand and the signage should meet five basic requirements: â¢ Fulfill a need; â¢ Command attention; â¢ Convey a clear, simple meaning; â¢ Command respect from road users; and â¢ Give adequate time for proper response. For more information about the design of effective wayfinding and signage systems for airport roadways, refer to ACRP Report 52: Wayfinding and Signing Guidelines for Airport Terminals and Landside. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-51. Color-coded ground transportation signage at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. Source: ACRP 03-35 Research Team Figure 4-52. Terminal arrivals roadway/ground transportation journey segment evaluation tool.