More self-service and bag-drop kiosks have been unveiled at Changi Airport's Terminal 1, as the airport moves towards adopting automation to increase efficiency and reduce the demand for manpower.
The counters, including a group of 30 check-in kiosks and 20 baggage drop-off machines in a carpeted area in the centre of the departure hall, have been gradually opened in phases this year.
More than half of the current renovation work at Terminal 1 to expand its capacity is now complete. The entire upgrading project is scheduled to finish in 2020.
The renovation work update at Terminal 1 was reported by Chinese-language daily Lianhe Zaobao on Sunday.
Most travellers told The Straits Times that they prefer doing self check-ins to using a manned counter because of the ease of use and the time saved.
The kiosks allow passengers to complete the check-in process without the need for face-to-face interaction with staff, much like the fully automated Terminal 4, which opened on Oct 31.
ALL FOR AUTOMATION
I don't mind doing this from now on - it is better than queueing. Once you are used to it, it is good.
MR THOMIS KWAN, who was at Terminal 1 for the first time in three years.
HUMAN INTERACTION PREFERRED
I can talk to them and ask them to check my passport, and it feels safer to me.
HOUSEWIFE FANNY SUMENDONG, who would rather use manned counters.
Jeweller Thomis Kwan, who was at Terminal 1 for the first time in three years, said of the new layout: "It looks new, and when people say our airport is good - it really shows."
"With the time saved (by doing self-service check-ins), people can go to shop, have a cup of coffee, and this might change the whole experience of an airport for them," said Mr Kwan, 63, who travels about four times a year and was heading to Vietnam for a holiday.
"I don't mind doing this from now on - it is better than queueing. Once you are used to it, it is good," he added.
Salesman Adithia Arfanto, 29, from Indonesia said speed was the main attraction of using the self-service machines. "It is easier and faster for me, but judging by the queue at the manned counters, I think many people still do not understand how to use the machines properly... (But) for a group check-in, or people with too many bags, they would prefer going for the manual option."
Housewife Fanny Sumendong, who was on holiday from Indonesia with a family of nine, said she would rather use the manned counters as she prefers the human interaction.
"I can talk to them and ask them to check my passport, and it feels safer to me," said the 69-year-old.
With the planned expansion of Terminal 1, it is expected to receive three million more passengers a year, up to a total of 24 million.
The upgrading works at the terminal are being carried out in tandem with the construction of Jewel Changi Airport, which is 65 per cent done and slated to open in 2019, Changi Airport Group told Channel NewsAsia on Sunday.
The current works include the building of link bridges to connect Jewel with Terminals 2 and 3, and the installation of Jewel's glass and steel facade.
The lifestyle and retail hub will feature slides and walking trails, and boast one of the largest indoor collections of plants in Singapore.