An airline is starting to weigh passengers before departure as of today
What does this mean for the overweight?
Air travel appears to be entering a new era after the concept, which was first tested in New Zealand between May and July, now moves to Korea, while being studied by US airlines - to be implemented.
Air New Zealand became the first case of an airline that, in addition to the luggage we take in the cabin, also weighed the passengers before the departure of international flights from Auckland Airport. Officials have asked passengers to provide their data anonymously, as part of an investigation.
Korean Air becomes the first airline to weigh passengers as well, following a decision not by the company itself -as was the case with Air New Zealand-, but following an order from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport of the country. The reason given was to ensure accurate aircraft valuations.
What this means: as an airplane takes off, it is subject to a very strict and rigid weight limit regulation. Therefore, the new measure aims to better calculate the weight of everything and everything that goes on the plane, in order to make the flight safer.
This is what flight experts claim. Until now an average passenger weight has been used "but many people are more kilos", aeronautics say, with studies confirming a worldwide increase in weight compared to the 2000s.
"Three hundred people who weigh more than average can significantly overload an airplane, and all of our performance calculations—runway length, climb, obstacle clearance, landing distances, altitude capabilities—depend on weight, among other things."
The ministry that made the decision in Korea also clarified that everything will be anonymous in the data collection initiative and personal data will be completely protected. He had also issued a relevant announcement, which disappeared "due to the great interest of the media.
After collection, the data will be shared with a larger data pool to reflect the total weight of all passengers. Anyone who does not want to be weighed has the right to do so as long as they inform the people who will be next to the scales.
It was also emphasized that overweight people will not pay more money, as everything is done for research purposes.
The start of the process will be given today at Gimpo International Airport in Seoul and will last until 3/9. From 8 to 19/9, the concept will be tested at the largest international airport, Incheon.
While U.S. airlines have yet to test the idea, aviation experts say it's not unlikely to happen soon.
In 2021, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued an advisory that clarified how passenger weighing provides the ability to estimate the gross weight of the aircraft. Thus it can be ensured that passengers and baggage do not exceed the allowed limit of the plane.
The proposal did not materialize, as the issue of the app's embarrassment to some travelers was raised. So, alternatives were sought.
From what we can tell from developments, a better way was probably not found.