Online travel agency Fliggy has launched facial recognition ticketing to be used at more than 1,000 tourist destinations in China within three years.

The Alibaba-owned firm has introduced the technology at Xixi National Wetland Park in Hangzhou, according to a report from SooToo.

The facial recognition technology can reportedly be applied to tickets purchased online or offline and is said to help eliminate scalping during peak tourist times.

According to Jing Travel, Fliggy said it will improve efficiency and reduce the need for extra staff to help manage crowds. The technology will be able to provide guests with guides to navigate the park.

Xu Xiang, the deputy general manager of Fliggy’s resort division, said that these tourist hubs will be now able to analyse the data on visitor flow and road conditions to better accommodate visitors to the parks and forecast patterns.

The ability to monitor visitors and flow will also allow destinations to conduct public opinion polls and issue emergency warnings. The technology will be integrated with other smart solutions to control street lights, monitor parking, and accept mobile payments.

Fliggy piloted the facial recognition programme to check in guests at hotels in under 30 seconds, though the process still requires guests to present an official government ID. The firm has not detailed whether the same is required for its ticketing endeavour. The scanned ID is in place to serve as a backup and manage flaws in the facial recognition system.

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