The Dallas Morning News
Airport adding power outlets
Airport plans about 2,750 more electrical outlets at gate areas
DFW International Airport is spending $1 million to install about 2,750 electrical outlets at gate seating areas across all five terminals at the nation’s fourth-busiest airport.
Travelers at DFW International Airport in need of a charge will soon have three times as many places to plug in their phones, laptops or tablets.
The airport board’s concessions and commercial development committee approved a $1 million contract on Tuesday with Canada-based Arconas Corp. to install about 2,750 electrical outlets at gate seating areas across all five terminals at the nation’s fourth busiest airport.
The contract needs routine final approval from the full board on Thursday, after which it will work to install the outlets as quickly as possible, said Kevin Smith, the airport’s assistant vice president of customer experience.
“We’re ready to go,” Smith said. “I don’t think you’ll have a problem finding a power outlet once these are installed.”
Smith said more power outlets is one of the top three requested items in daily customer surveys conducted at the airport.
DFW now has power outlets installed at 10 to 15 percent of its seats, Smith said. After the new outlets are added, that number will jump to between 40 and 50 percent.
The percentage of passengers with access to power should be even higher, Smith said, because each of the new outlets includes two sockets and two USB ports. Airlines like American have also installed their own charging stations at gates throughout the airport.
“If everybody is sitting in each seat, we should see a lot more than 40 percent,” Smith said. “What you normally see is people will skip seats in order not to sit next to each other.”
Gate-side electrical outlets are becoming an increasingly expected part of the travel experience and their presence can have a measurable impact on customer satisfaction, according to J.D. Power.
DFW Airport was recently honored for having the best passenger satisfaction of any large airport in North America by Airports Council International. The airport received kudos for its use of technology, as well as its dining and shopping options, its cleanliness and staff friendliness.