World first: Smart screens at Heathrow compare live airport transfer options

Posted on in News Archive

UK: Screens have been installed at Heathrow Terminal 2 showing passengers live price and journey time comparisons between taxis and the airport’s train service to central London.

The screens - a world first - combine real-time traffic, weather and Heathrow Express train service information into one user-friendly data feed, or ‘journey comparison generator,’ at the terminal’s baggage reclaim zone.

The aim is to help customers make the fastest and cheapest choice of onward travel.

“The aim of the ‘journey comparison generator’ is to enable Heathrow passengers to get into London as speedily, easily and cheaply as possible. By harnessing many different sources of real-time data into one we are helping make this happen,” said Fraser Brown, Heathrow Express director.

“Research shows that Heathrow Express trains are three times faster than taxis and a quarter of the price. These screens show how that comparison varies minute to minute depending on traffic, weather and time of day.”

This summer the screens at each baggage carousel will be translated to the main language of people on the arriving flight, and later in the year they will be installed across Heathrow’s Terminals 3 and 5.

The project was jointly devised and created by Heathrow Express, which connects Heathrow and Paddington in just 15 minutes, every 15 minutes; JCDecaux Airport UK, which sells media space; and digital agency, which links digital networks.

“We are delighted to be such an integral part of this world-first proposition that has the ability to transform how brands communicate to passengers as well as enhance travellers’ airport experiences,” Alan Sullivan, Managing Director at JCDecaux Airport, said. tackled the complex task of bringing together five different layers of real-time data feeds, including GPS traffic information used in TomTom car satnavs, Google, Highways Agency, the Met Office and timetable information from Heathrow Express.

Andrew Newman, co-founder of, said: “Our mission is to help brands make campaigns smart and built around right-time messaging. This dynamic technology provides customer-focussed information in the future.”

Fraser Brown will be presenting this project at the annual Global AirRail 2015 Conference, taking place in Toronto, on 20-22 May.

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