As the year winds down to a close we are very excited to present you with an article devoted to the new technologies in Aruba travel. Aruba is truly the cutting-edge destination in the Caribbean with travel innovations that lead the industry. The new services that have been implemented will literally increase your vacation time in Aruba! That’s right! Literally! Here’s what we found:
1) Online Embarkation and Disembarkation (ED) program
If you’ve traveled outside of your home country you’ve probably completed an embarkation form on your flight–a complete buzzkill.
I tend to lose my smile when made to fill out paperwork on my vacation–just the thing I go on vacation to escape. Well the vacation visionaries at Aruba Tourism Authority (ATA) and Aruba Immigration Services (IASA) have found another way to streamline your travel experience.
Embarkation/Debarkation forms are now available to be filled out online! The form can be filled out once you’ve booked your flight up to 48 hours before departure to Aruba. Each family member/traveler needs to fill out this form (ED card) including children. As long as the children have their own passport, parents may fill out the online ED card in advance.
The online ED card can be filled out at www.edcardaruba.aw. The website is available in Dutch, English and Spanish. Once completed you will receive an e-mail confirmation so you don’t even need to print it out if you’re pressed for time.
Benefits of Online ED Program:
- easy online registration
- quick processing times
- current status can be viewed
The best part about this program in the words of the Aruba Airport Authority– “This shortens the waiting time at the Immigration Service and leaves more time to enjoy Aruba!”
(Although it does not guarantee access to Aruba. The decision remains with the immigration officer at the airport.)
– See more: http://prn.to/1OEYz6e
2) iPoolside powered by iPalapa www.ipalapa.com
Day One–you head out to the beach and would love to enjoy a relaxing day under a palapa–but they’re all already taken…aargh….blood pressure rising!
Day Two–it’s 7AM time to get on line outside by the beach and reserve your palapa….so much for sleeping in…. vacation, huh?!
Later on Day Two–It’s 4PM…time to get on line again to reserve your palapa for tmw. grrr…you were relaxing with family.
Good News….now you can go “online” to reserve a palapa!
The hassle has finally been solved by the cutting-edge palapa reservation service– iPoolside powered by iPalapa Corporation.
If you’re staying at the Hyatt Regency Aruba Spa Resort & Casino, guests can simply go onto the Hyatt’s wifi in-resort network and locate iPalapa services (ask your concierge for more info) each day at 4PM and select the palapa location you would prefer for the next day. Choose from premium locations for a fee or free options–we tested the tool which allows you to see the entire resort’s inventory—so cool! The service is currently available only at the Aruba Hyatt but they have advised us that iPoolside will soon be available at other neighboring properties. We predict this service will become the industry standard as it expands into additional markets throughout Latin America and the Caribbean as well.
As a longer term vision, iPalapa will be developing the option to order food and beverage directly to your palapa without delay for waitstaff.
The interface is extremely easy to use and mobile friendly.
We rate this service the Winner for 2015-2016!
3) The ‘Happy Flow’ Project: Biometric Identifier at Aruba Airport
While this futuristic ‘pilot project’ is currently in the testing stage for the next two years, facial recognition technology will be used to identify passengers at check-in, bag drop, border control and aircraft boarding. Once the passenger is identified at the check-in point they are verified through all the stages of the boarding process. It will no longer be necessary to show passports or boarding passes again before reaching the aircraft.
Aruba’s Prime Minister, Mike Eman, announced the launch of the pilot project as “an extremely innovative and important step in the transportation industry for passengers, not only for Aruba, but worldwide”.
If the project is deemed successful it will be expanded according to Joe Nujhuis, CEO and President of Schiphol Group, which manages Aruba’s Airport. He has commented: “With Aruba Happy Flow, together we have made an innovative step to further improve the comfort for the passenger.”
The Happy Flow Project is a collaboration between Aruba, the Netherlands, Aruba Airport Authority, Schiphol Group and KLM.
– See more at: http://www.airport-business.com/2015/06/top-10-airport-innovations-2015-far/#sthash.bH8eCJBj.dpuf
4) Other Exciting News:
- The Radisson Aruba has re-launched as the Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino
- The “New” Holiday Inn Resort Aruba – Beach Resort & Casino is even newer and better than ever!
- The Reina Beatrix International Airport has been fully renovated including an airport wide Wi-Fi upgrade, new Kiosks and additional seating.
- The city of San Nicolas continues to be developed as a cultural center for the island of Aruba .
- Player’s Choice Tours, offering the best in Aruba vacations,
has remodeled their website increasing user experience. Check them out at: www.aruba4u.com
Many exciting services are changing the Aruba travel experience with the goal of making your vacation to the Happy Island seamless and stress-free.
Best of all they will save time–your most precious vacation asset!
We hope 2015 was a good year for you and that you will be able to make your dreams come true with a vacation in Aruba in 2016.