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Bots on the Rocks: BA Uses A-I to Reinvent the Cocktail

British Airways is testing new tech in cocktail dispensing at lounges in SFO and EWR

by Business Traveler

February 4, 2020

British Airways is exclusively trialling an automated cocktail maker in its San Francisco and Newark lounges. Cocktails are dispensed in under 45 seconds, adding a new dimension to the food and drink available for customers.

Available until March 2020, British Airways’ First and Club World customers travelling from San Francisco and Newark will be able to choose from a selection of 30 cocktails and customisable drinks from the robotic device. This includes locally-inspired cocktails that British Airways has created – “Silicon Galley” and “Echo-Whisky-Romeo.”

The machine has been created by mix-master Barsys using Artificial Intelligence (AI).  As British Airways is the first UK airline to trial the technology, it gives the airline’s customers a first chance to try this autonomous machine.

Customers simply order their drink by clicking one button on the app, then place a glass on the conveyer belt and let the AI do the work.

“We are always looking at innovative ways to enhance our customers’ journey on the ground and in the air. Barsys offers a new cocktail experience and what better way to trial this technology than in our newly refurbished San Francisco lounge, known for being a tech-hub, and Newark, just a stone’s throw away from the cosmopolitan city of Manhattan.

British Airways is investing more than $8 billion for its customers over five years, taking delivery of 73 new aircraft including A350 and 787s, refurbishing its long-haul fleet with new cabins so they look and feel new, introducing new, redesigned lounges, new dining across all cabins, new bedding and amenity kits for First, Club World and World Traveller Plus, best quality onboard WiFi to every aircraft and providing access to power at every aircraft seat. The airline recently introduced its Club Suite, a new business class seat with direct aisle access on its A350 aircraft, which will be rolled out across the British Airways’ long-haul fleet over the next few years.