Marriott and Alibaba trial facial recognition at China hotels

By on July 15, 2018 | Technology

Chinese guests at Marriott International, the world’s largest hotel chain, will soon be able to check in with a quick scan of their facial features.

The Joint Venture of Alibaba Group and Marriott International has announced it is spearheading Marriott International’s facial recognition check-in pilot with Fliggy, Alibaba’s travel service platform, as it aims to continually elevate the travel experience for tech-savvy Chinese travellers.

“We are excited to partner with the joint venture yet again to offer an innovative and convenient check-in alternative for Chinese travellers. Marriott International has a track record of embracing cutting-edge technology to create memorable experiences for guests,” highlighted Henry Lee, COO and MD of Marriott International Greater China and Board Member of the JV. “With technology, our hotel associates can work more efficiently to do what they do best – delivering personalized service to our guests.”

Image source: Channel NewsAsia

Image source: Channel NewsAsia

With Fliggy’s expertise in facial recognition technology and the joint venture’s hospitality insights, the pilot will kick off from July 2018 at two Marriott International properties in China – Hangzhou Marriott Hotel Qianjiang and Sanya Marriott Hotel Dadonghai Bay, with the goal of global rollout across Marriott International’s properties in the future. This move is set to position Marriott International as a pioneer global hospitality company to offer this seamless check-in experience.

The check-in process can be completed in less than a minute. Chinese guests simply need to scan their IDs, take a photo and input contact details on a self-help machine. The intelligent device will then dispense room key cards after identities and booking information are verified.

Both the companies had announced the establishment of a joint venture last year to redefine the travel experience for the hundreds of millions of Chinese consumers traveling abroad and domestically every year. As incomes rise, China’s middle class is looking for higher quality products and travel experiences. This new technology is perfectly designed to satisfy consumers’ expectations for seamless, integrated, personalized, and convenient travel solutions.


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