What Does it Mean for Travellers?
Cutting back on the announcements might sound like a bad move, especially for travellers prone to missing their flights, but a similar exercise in 2014 proved otherwise. During a recent interview with the Straits Times, Mr Ivan Tan (a spokesperson from the Changi Airport Group) shared how the airport had previously asked various airlines to cut their announcements to just one. The result? It turns out that the same number of passengers eventually show up for their flights late, with or without announcements.
Travellers would now have to be more alert on their transit and check the boarding screens for information on how to get around (the airport claims to have more than 200 screens in total). Airlines have also been enlisted to remind their passengers of their boarding time and to arrive on time at their boarding gates upon check-in.
Making Way for a “Quieter” Airport
This giant leap assumes that with lesser announcements, passengers will listen to and react promptly when emergencies arise or when critical updates are being shared on the public address system. With Changi Airport experiencing a growth in visitors after the recent opening of the new Terminal 4 (in addition to a slew of additional flight routes), this measure hopes to maintain a relaxed environment throughout the airport.
A New Direction for Changi Airport?
This small change not only enforces passengers to be more self-reliant, it encourages an already existing pattern of technological automation within the industry. For example, Changi Airport’s brand new Terminal 4 is almost run entirely without humans, with high-tech kiosks taking the place of manual processes (and friendly smiles).
That said, it is always a good practice for travellers to have good time management skills, just be sure not to get too distracted by the many activities available in the world’s best airport.