A trip to the airport usually means waiting in long lines. But travelers could be skipping the wait at one spot if Amazon has its way. Reuters has exclusively learned that the online retailer has been courting airports, looking to expand its checkout free shopping known as Amazon Go. Reuters correspondent, Jeffrey Dastin, in San Francisco.
>> The airport market makes sense for Amazon because there are tons of people from around the world traveling through airports. Just the top 12 had more than 350 million passengers last year. And all these people are in a hurry.>> It works like this. Customers scan their smartphones at a turnstile to enter.
Cameras then identify what they take from the shelves. When shoppers are finished, they simply leave the store, and Amazon bills their credit cards on file. Amazon has opened seven of the stores since January in Chicago, San Francisco, and Seattle. But public records now show the company is scouting US airports for new locations, including LAX and San Jose.
But a move into airports could be tricky. Workers must gain clearances to staff concessions after security checkpoints. Concession space can be expensive to lease, and many airports require potential retailers to put in public bids for space.>> And the challenge to that is that let's say Amazon wants to do a deal.
Well, the terms of that could become public. And a competitor to Amazon could swoop in at the last second to try to take that prime real estate.>> The move marks another way Amazon is expanding its brick and mortar footprint as it looks to capture a greater share of shopper spending.