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United Becomes First Airline to Allow Mobile App Passport Scanning

August 7, 2014 at 11:32 AM | by | ()

Two days ago, when checking in for a flight from Denver to Guatemala City on the United app, we were unable to obtain a mobile boarding pass and had to check in at the desk upon arriving at the airport.

The reason for this is that a passenger's passport must be verified before a boarding pass - regardless of whether it's paper or mobile - can be issued on international flights. Surely, you're familiar with the self check-in kiosk that makes you scan your passport, and that send you to the desk agent when it malfunctions.

That scenario changed yesterday, though, when United announced that it will now offer customers the ability to scan their passports via their iOS and Android mobile devices when checking in for international flights 24 hours in advance. United said the process and technology works in the same way that a mobile banking app is able to scan and evaluate checks. When checking in for an international flight on the mobile app, passengers will automatically be prompted to scan, aka take a picture of, their passport.

This launch is part of a large testing run, and United said it will collect feedback from users in order to improve and add to the service. If you're headed out of the country via United anytime soon, be sure to give it a go and let us (and United) know if you have any feedback. We're going to try it out next week when we make our way back to the States.

[Photo: United]

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