KLM – Airport Wayfinding

For an Airline it’s important to have as little missing passengers and missed connections as possible. If a passenger cannot find the gate, or is stuck in security and cannot get to the gate on time. His bagage has to be offloaded off the plane. This means that ground personal has to crawl in the containers holding the bagage and find the individual suitcase. This can take up to 20 minutes. The result is that other passengers might not make their connecting flights and the plane burns extra fuel trying to make up for the lost time. 

Therefore, helping passengers navigating the airport by helping them find their way to their lounge, point of interest, but especially to their departing gate, is important. 

From a technology perspective especially finding a good solution for Indoor Location was the most challenging part. We started off with Beacons with turned out to be a very unreliable solution. We experimented with dead reckoning solutions but eventually we found Apple core location – if the an Airport has been “fingerprinted” – to be the most reliable solution for iOS. 

Today, there are currently 28 Airport maps available in the KLM app, AirFrance app and the apps that are used by ground and flying personal of both brands.

The features shows your own location on the Airport map, your departing gate. And search results filtered based on distance to your own location. It’s interesting to see that most passengers have the most trouble finding the smoking area’s and the lounges. 

Building this fundamental product first opened up a wide range of possibilities and features around Airport wayfinding and the location of passengers.

On the KLM iOS app the MAU varies between 280K in peak season to 150K in slower months. 

ROLE(S)Product Strategy, Product Management 
DATA 2015 – 2019
CLIENT KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Air France.