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Delta expands Digital ID program to LAX, LGA and JFK for touchless airport experience

Digital ID, Delta’s time-saving, industry-first technology that allows customers to check bags and move through security without showing a physical government ID, is growing its presence with expansion to three major hubs.

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Delta customers in LAX, LGA and JFK now have a quicker way to move through the airport – just in time for holiday travel.  

Debuted in 2021 at the airline’s Detroit and Atlanta hubs, Delta Digital ID provides customers with a seamless, hands-free way to navigate the airport. Now, this industry-leading technology — developed in close partnership with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) — is expanding to three key coastal hubs.  

Delta Digital ID uses biometric facial matching to eliminate the need for an agent-facilitated document check, allowing customers to move through bag drop and security checkpoints with more convenience and ease. This completely optional technology is eligible to customers who: 

  • Have a TSA PreCheck® membership 

  • Have passport information and a Known Traveler Number stored in their Delta profile  

  • Have a (free) SkyMiles membership 

  • Have the Fly Delta app 

How to opt in to Delta Digital ID

Eligible customers will receive a notification in their Fly Delta app when traveling from a Digital ID-enabled airport: Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL); Detroit Metro Airport (DTW); Los Angeles International Airport (LAX); LaGuardia Airport (LGA); and John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK, launching Dec. 14). Once opted in, Delta Digital ID becomes part of a customer’s SkyMiles profile, though they may choose to opt out at any time. Delta does not save or store any biometric data. 

Eligible customers can always opt into Digital ID via their SkyMiles profile on Delta.com. A passport and/or Known Traveler Number will need to be stored in the customer’s SkyMiles profile before they’re able to opt in. 

Customers can use Delta Digital ID to check bags and move through security without having to show a physical ID (following the post-launch verification period). They will simply navigate to the appropriate line – look for the green “Delta Digital ID” icon – look into the camera at bag drop and/or the security checkpoint, and use their digital identity in place of a physical ID.  

An airport with different check ins, including Delta's Digital ID.

While time savings at security lines vary according to airport volume, Delta Digital ID transactions at bag drop take an average time of 30 seconds – a near-1.5-minute time savings from the standard bag drop time of two minutes. Overall, customers using Delta Digital ID outperform other Fly Delta app users by double-digit margins in satisfaction with the check-in and security experiences. 

“We know a frictionless airport experience is integral to your satisfaction with your overall journey,” said Allison Ausband, Chief Customer Experience Officer. “With Digital ID, our customers spend less time hassling with their wallets, and our agents spend less time checking documents. It opens an opportunity for our people and our customers to genuinely connect.”  

Delta’s partners at the TSA see equal benefit in bringing this technology to more locations. “Delta Digital ID helps passengers save time and improves security effectiveness," said Austin Gould, Assistant Administrator, Requirements, Capabilities and Analysis – TSA. "It's a simpler, more convenient experience – one that strictly adheres to passenger privacy and our security protocols, as well as our mission of protecting our nation’s transportation systems.”  

While facial matching algorithms are extremely accurate, a trained agent will inspect the customer’s government-issued ID if the technology is unable to identify a customer.  

Since its implementation at ATL and DTW, Delta Digital ID’s time-saving value has proven to be highly popular, with a large majority of eligible customers opting in to the technology. That popularity will drive expansion in the coming year; as soon as January, Digital ID’s presence in Atlanta will expand to the international terminal (ATL-F).  

While Delta looks to expand the technology to additional hubs in 2024, the launch of Digital ID at LAX, LGA and JFK should be a boon to customers ahead of the busy year-end travel season. 

“Delta Digital ID provides a huge benefit in both time-savings and convenience, and we’ve been working with our partners for years to expand its reach,” said Greg Forbes, Managing Director – Airport Experience. “We’re thrilled to bring this technology to a whole new subset of our customer base.” 

Read more on Digital ID on Delta News Hub.

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