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HK Airport Express: check-in and transit

January 2013


I wrote about Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) and the Airport Express service between the terminal and Kowloon in a previous post. I had an opportunity to take a few more photos on the service on my way back from Hong Kong, when I checked-in at Kowloon Station prior to proceeding to HKIA. The system is so easy and so convenient for travelers, and is something that should definitely be replicated elsewhere where they still don’t have something similar in place. More information may be found with the HKIA website and the MTR website that features all the details on the Airport Express service, including complementary services such as shuttle buses to and from hotels via Kowloon or Hong Kong Stations.

IMG05122-20121206-1437One does not have to purchase tickets over the counter as there are ticket vending machines at the station. The easy-to-use machine can be operated in Chinese or English and accepts coins and bills for payment.

IMG05123-20121206-1441Check-in counters for most if not all airlines using Hong Kong International Airport may be found at Kowloon Station. This makes it possible for travelers to complete the procedure including checking-in their luggage for passengers to be able to travel light between the station and HKIA.

IMG05124-20121206-1441Monitors on top of each counter displays which airlines are served by the counter staff.

IMG05125-20121206-1449Flight schedules are displayed at Kowloon Station and there is a security check prior to the check-in counters.

IMG05128-20121206-1457The LED display on top gives passengers information on the progress of the trip while the monitor provides business news.

IMG05129-20121206-1459A view of the ports along the way to the airport.

The Hong Kong Airport Express provides one of the most efficient services I’ve seen for airports. It makes perfect sense in this day and age when advances in IT would allow for such services like checking-in for your flight and convenience and comfort should be the focus of service providers. I think such services are what makes airports like HKIA good examples for best practices on service delivery to passengers.

In the case of Manila, the recent opening of an airport lounge at a major mall in Quezon City serving Clark International Airport (north of Metro Manila) presents an opportunity to provide similar services for the convenience of passengers. Perhaps a local airline like Cebu Pacific should initiate check-ins at this satellite lounge so that passengers would be freed from their luggage as they make their way to Clark (a 1.5 hour trip between the Quezon City and the airport). Perhaps, too, there should be a similar system for people taking Ninoy Aquino International Airport even though the challenge is how to manage travel using the road in the absence of express rail services. These are sure to boost travel and tourism but should also have impacts on business considering the convenience and efficiency such a system can provide.

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