Berlin Brandenburg offers new facial recognition service

Passengers use facial recognition instead of a boarding pass

Passengers can use some services using face as a boarding pass

Berlin’s Brandenburg Airport (BER) has launched a new biometric service for passengers departing from Terminal 1.

Called BER Biometrics, the service means that passengers can use facial recognition at several touchpoints instead of a boarding pass.

Passengers can use the biometric checks for these services:

  • printing baggage tags at selected self-service machines
  • use of the BER Runway security check with an extended time slot
  • access to the BER Tegel Lounge (if they’ve booked access)
  • access to the central exit in Terminal 1

BER Biometrics is optional and free for passengers aged 16 and over and can be booked from seven days before departure.

How BER Biometrics works

  • Passengers create a profile in an app, App SmartDepart, and upload a selfie.
  • At each touchpoint, the system takes a live picture of the passenger and matches it with the selfie stored in the app.
  • If a match is successful, the airport receives the boarding pass information and grants access.
  • During the matching, no original image files are compared with each other, but only digitally created reference files to enable an assignment between the passenger on-site and the app user. 
  • The pictures taken at BER will be deleted after the flight. The user data stored independently when creating the profile and the uploaded selfie remain in the app, but can be managed independently by the passenger at any time.

BER Biometrics replaces the presentation but passengers still have to carry the boarding pass and other official travel documents (passport and identity card etc.).

All products integrated in BER Biometrics at BER Airport (Fast Bag Drop, BER Runway, lounges) can still be used without BER Biometrics.


Passengers at Berlin Airport can book security time slots


The airport worked with its partner company, Munich-based AirSphere, whose boarding pass control software is already in use at BER.

Airsphere has projects and solutions at over 120 airports around the world with a focus on Passenger Management and Passenger Automation Solutions.

Internet links

Berlin Brandenburg (BER)

BER Biometrics