Self service options continue to proliferate, from the supermarket check out line to the Redbox DVD machine.

Self service options continue to proliferate, from the supermarket check out line to the Redbox DVD machine.

Now the airport can be added to that list, as Continental Airlines is trialing a self-boarding system at a gate in Houston. The process has been used at a number of foreign airports, but this is the first instance in the U.S..

USA Today reports:

In self-boarding, passengers — much like customers of the New York City subway— swipe their boarding passes at a kiosk reader at the gate. That opens a turnstile or door to the jet-bridge. Although an agent isn't there to take the pass, one is typically present to handle problems and other customer service tasks.

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