Self-driving electric wheelchairs to be tested at Narita Airport

In a bid to help those with limited mobility get to the gate, Tokyo Narita International Airport is set to welcome a number of self-driving wheelchairs to its floors. With the ability to navigate the airport all on their own, the new wheelchairs are hoped to streamline foot traffic in one of Japan’s busiest airports and form part of a wider plan to boost mobility options at such facilities.

From checking in, to moving through security, to walking briskly to make that connecting flight, navigating an airport can require passengers to cover quite a bit of ground. This can be demanding enough with a heavy bag or two in tow, and particularly so for the elderly or those with mobility issues.

It is with this in mind that Japan’s largest airline, All Nippon Airways, has teamed up with Panasonic to explore new mobility solutions designed specifically for airports.