On the road to seamless journeys: WTTC and WEF join hands

The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) and the World Economic Forum (WEF) are partnering to help shape the future of how we travel by using digital traveller identity management throughout the whole travel and tourism sector.

The agreement will see the two organisations collaborating, exchanging information and working together to achieve international harmonisation through the use of standards and inter-operability across different parts of the tourism journey.

The Known Traveller Digital Identity (KTDI) project, a World Economic Forum initiative, brings together a global consortium of individuals, governments, authorities and the travel industry to enhance security in world travel. In January 2018, the governments of Canada and the Netherlands committed to piloting the concept in an international cross-border context. Now, the KTDI Pilot Consortium has been officially launched, with testing of the enabling technology to start during 2019.

Through its Seamless Traveller Journey programme (STJ), WTTC has researched over 53 initiatives using biometrics in the tourism sector and has identified potential emerging models – such as the WEF KTDI initiative – which may address the end-to-end traveller journey of the future.

“Ensuring safe and hassle-free travel by using bio-metric technology.”

Gloria Guevara, president and CEO of WTTC said: “Our data shows that tourism contributes 10.4% of global GDP and 319 million jobs. Not only will we need to do things differently – as we cannot expect a near-doubling of airport capacity in the next 20 years – but we will need to do things right. The key, therefore, is to maximise the growth in a way that ensures safe and hassle-free travel by using bio-metric technology.”

Dr. Christoph Wolff, head of mobility industries and system initiative and member of the executive committee of World Economic Forum explained: “The Known Traveller Digital Identity concept was co-designed by stakeholders across the aviation, travel and tourism ecosystem with the intention of testing a platform that is scalable, interoperable and useful to all actors relying on identities in their service provision. Working alongside WTTC provides the valuable opportunity to refine the framework and platform to serve all tourism services.”

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