Pre-booked security time slots are being trialled by Manchester airport in a bid to “help restore confidence in travel”.
The scheme – the first of its kind announced by a UK airport – sees passengers select a free 15-minute slot online and given the use of a dedicated lane for pre-flight checks.
It is hoped the policy will make the security process more efficient and help keep queues shorter.
Slots will be limited and will be operated on a first come first served basis, according to airport owner Manchester Airports Group (MAG).
Passengers should book around two hours before their flight departure time and arrive within the chosen slot – those who don’t will have to join the normal security queue, which could take considerably more time given social distancing measures in place.
If successful, the system will be put in place at Stansted and East Midlands airports, also owned by MAG.
Brad Miller, chief operating officer at Manchester airport, said: “Safety and security will always be the first priority and, at the same time, Covid-19 will undoubtedly reshape the airport experience. We are exploring every innovation and technology that can help us to adapt to the new world, protect public health and restore confidence in air travel.
“This new measure will allow us to manage our security process more efficiently in these challenging times, providing a better and more comfortable experience for passengers.
“It is the latest in a series of measures introduced by MAG to make travel safer during the pandemic, which includes asking passengers and colleagues to wear face coverings and piloting temperature screening technologies.”