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An End to the Airport Parking Nightmare

Germans are renowned for their efficiency.

Whether it’s their transportation systems, engineering prowess, or consistently strong (and now world champion) national football team, it’s a well-earned reputation, built up over many decades.

In keeping with that tradition, Bavarian firm, Serva Transport Systems, has created the next wave of innovation, designed to eliminate another stress from life…

The Time-Saving, Space-Saving Robot Parker

Remember when flying used to be fun?

Yeah, me neither.

And it’s certainly not just about waiting in line at the check-in desk… the tiresome rigmarole at the security checkpoint… or the uncomfortable in-flight experience itself.

These days, there are more people and more cars all battling for space in airport car parks that were built many years ago.

And if you’ve ever had to battle through traffic to make it to the airport on time, the last thing you want is to frantically roam the car park, looking for a space.

Serva Transport Systems aims to eliminate that stress with its new innovation – “Ray.”

Ray is the world’s first automated robot parking attendant that will park drivers’ cars for them, and then fetch them upon the driver’s return.

On trial at Dusseldorf Airport in Germany, Ray not only saves time, it saves space, too.

In fact, Serva Transport Systems software engineer, Thomas Nagel, says, “We’re able to park the cars in such a way that really saves space – one can park between 40% and 60% more cars in the lot.”

And if you’ve seen the way some people park their cars, you’ll understand how advantageous this is!

Dude, Where’s My Car?

As soon as passengers arrive at the airport, they leave their car in Ray’s delivery area, summon the robot, and it shuttles the car to one of its 249 designated parking spots.

When they return, forget scouring the car park, trying to remember where the car is (something I can personally relate to!)… Ray delivers the car back to them at the same drop-off point.

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Dusseldorf Airport spokesman, Thomas Koetter, says the trial is proving popular, too: “We notice that there’s a target audience of passengers who quite simply don’t want to spend their time tediously searching for parking spots in the mornings and evenings. In many cases, it’s the business travelers who must catch very early flights.”

As with many early innovations, the initial price for the service is fairly high. Ray costs four euros ($5.27) per hour, or 29 euros ($38.21) per day. But passengers love the convenience and time saved.

Given Ray’s popularity, Serva Transport Systems hopes to expand the service within Dusseldorf Airport – and then to other airports.

It can’t come soon enough, as far as I’m concerned.

Martin Denholm

Martin Denholm

, Managing Editor

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