logo VINCI Airports VINCI Airports Published on the 30th November 2022

Vinci uses facial recognition to bring the world's first biometric assistant to life

The digital transformation in the aviation sector has accelerated in recent years worldwide. New digital services are being developed in many airports. Geneva Airport, with GVApp, has digitized the entire passenger journey, while in other countries, Big Data analyses are used to optimize pedestrian traffic. In 2020, VINCI Airports & Lyon Airports are announcing the release of MONA, the world's first mobile biometric assistant using facial recognition.

UX UI Mobile Digital transformation
Vinci uses facial recognition to bring the world's first biometric assistant to life

With 45 airports, a presence in 12 countries and 15,000 employees, VINCI Airports is the largest airport group in the world. For years, passenger services have been at the heart of the company's concerns, and this is notably achieved through digital solutions. For example, VINCI Airports is the first airport group in Europe to have launched a free and unlimited WIFI service for its customers.

A unique experience and customized support for travelers

When traveling, the airport is often a source of stress for passengers. Every step of the way has its own set of concerns: not missing your flight, difficulties in finding the right terminal, security checks, the queue for boarding... With this in mind, the Lyon Airports and Atipik teams are starting the first discussions in December 2019, with the objective of providing a service to accompany visitors on the Lyon Airport mobile application. The idea is, not only to save passengers time, but also to offer relevant services at the right time.

Your travel companion: MONA

Beyond the use of facial recognition, a complete service is made available

A global experience is added to the benefits of facial recognition for travelers. At each step of the journey: from home to the plane, passengers are guided by MONA. The user has a timeline that contains the different stages of his journey. For each step, a map shows the most relevant information and services. At the airport, facial recognition allows the user to know exactly which stage he is at. In the Duty Free area before boarding, MONA proposes personalized and adapted offers. Thanks to a timer and the walking time indicated to get to the boarding gate, the user no longer needs to run and can do his shopping or eat, without hurrying! A few days before departure, MONA offers advice for the preparation of your trip: book a parking space, a checklist of things to bring before departure (ID card, Visa, PCR test...), etc.

Using the MONA app
Using the MONA app

Security and privacy issues

The use of facial recognition is becoming more widespread around the world, however, there are many legitimate concerns about this technology. At Atipik, we are approaching this debate with a clear focus: to be precise about how biometric data is used, to give full control to the passenger, and to ensure, as the designer and developer of the product, that the rules imposed by the reference organizations are respected. Airline security was also a key issue in the implementation of this project, with MONA we are replacing a physical and human control of identity documents, something totally inconceivable a few years ago. Yet, we have achieved this. We worked with authorities such as the CNIL (Commission Nationale de l'Informatique et des Libertés) and the DGAC (Direction Générale de l'Aviation Civile) to ensure that individual liberties and confidentiality were respected and that air security was ensured under the same conditions as an ordinary passenger journey.

Even before launching the project, we knew that the collaboration would be intense, close and efficient. From our first exchanges, our project team felt confident in the seriousness and the ideas brought by the Atipik team.

Cesar Clary Innovation & Digital Project Director Lyon Aéroport / VINCI Airports
A person who uses the application

The user tests

Before the launch of the service, a phase of user testing was set up. A very important practice because it allows to identify points of improvement or potential bugs. All this before the product is put online.



MONA is considered an innovative service that is appreciated by users. Some appreciate the time savings MONA offers while others see it mostly as a benefit for personalized offers.


An innovative service, appreciated by users

MONA users save an average of 30 minutes over their entire journey and the excellent 60% conversion rate during the multiple stages of configuring their biometric profile is testimony to the extensive optimization of the user experience. Finally, the use of all the cards proposed by the assistant by the vast majority of users confirms the relevance of the choices made as well as the information and services offered.

MONA logo

Meet MONA!

Download the Lyon Airport app on iPhone or Android.