Cape Town cuts out boarding calls after noise level complaints
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Posted: 28 February 2018 | International Airport Review | 1 comment
In keeping with a trend among airports throughout the world, Cape Town International will now reserve the use of its public address microphones for select circumstances such as lost minors in order to keep noise levels down.
SHHHH: Cape Town International is following a growing trend among airports
Passengers departing on domestic and international flights from Cape Town International Airport from March will no longer hear boarding calls at their respective check-in areas and boarding gates.
Airports Company South Africa, the airport’s operator, has said it made the move in response to passenger complaints about noise levels.
Standard operating procedures for most domestic flights require that passengers start boarding at least 30 minutes before the scheduled departure time and one hour for international travellers.
From March, public address microphones at the domestic departures gates will be switched off and only limited use will be allowed at the international departures gates.
The only instances where centralised terminal announcements will be made will be for irregular operations such as gate changes, flight time changes, security matters, system failures and customer service anomalies such as lost minors.
Spokesman for Cape Town International Airport, Deidre Davids said: “As Cape Town International Airport we have noted the feedback from passengers in independent customer surveys citing complaints about noise levels in airports.
“In keeping with global trends and the aviation’s move toward passengers being increasingly self-sufficient we are adopting the global trend of silent airports.
“The obvious benefit of a silent airport is reduced noise, which has been an issue of contention for our passengers.
“This means that the public-address microphones at the domestic and international departures terminal and gates will be switched off, with limited announcements at gates for international passengers.
“Passengers will be advised to check their boarding passes and the flight information display boards for boarding times, gates and any other changes.”
Many international airports have already adopted a silent airport policy to improve airport ambience and reduce complaints about the number and frequency of calls for individual passengers to board their flights who have checked in and have not arrived at the boarding gates.
Although “silent airport”, meaning reduction of (boarding) calls, is gaining importance, calls will remain necessary. Complaints of too high sound levels can be minimised by applying the “whispering voice” concept. Integration of room acoustics and a special control system of the loudness of the call volume will achieve this.