Identify every fan to maximize security/Hooliganism in Belgium

The Ultimate Fan Experience: Biometric Technology and Frictionless Stadium

In the dynamic realm of live sports events, fans crave more than just watching the game; they seek an immersive fan experience that surpasses the comfort of home entertainment. This demand poses a challenge for clubs to provide an ultimate in-stadium fan experience that outshines home viewing and other live events.

As emphasized by the Barça Innovation Hub, the integration of cutting-edge technologies is crucial for clubs to attract fans, making the stadium experience superior to home viewing or other live sports events. Capgemini Research Institute‘s report further supports this by revealing that a remarkable 91% of fans increased their spending on team merchandise following a satisfying in-stadium experience, encompassing aspects like stadium access, activities, and security.

Shields and Rein, in their book ’21st Century Sports’, highlight the concept of a ‘frictionless stadium experience’ as key to enhancing fan satisfaction. This concept is defined by effortless and quick access without queues, a secure environment, and smooth, instant payment processes. The goal is to eliminate avoidable queues, seen as the primary hindrance to achieving a frictionless stadium and the ultimate fan experience. To achieve this goal, biometric-based access, such as facial recognition linked to tickets of TrustPass, offers an alternative to barcodes or QR codes by providing immediate entry through face tickets and reducing pressure on security processes. In what follows, we dive deeper into the objectives of creating a frictionless stadium

Ensuring Stadium Security

A safe and secure environment is another crucial aspect of the frictionless experience. Instances like the 167 fines issued for supporter-related problems in the Netherlands, totaling €920,000, underscore the need for effective security measures. All sports clubs need to ensure the safety of every single fan so they can focus on having a good experience. Technologies like biometric access, which can connect with databases of stadium bans and possibly national criminal databases, play a vital role in ensuring a secure atmosphere for all attendees.

Frictionless queueing

In most stadiums, you have two steps to access sports venues: scanning your ticket at turnstiles or mobile ticket scanners and a quick security check by stewards. In some countries, the situation is even worse as the ticket must be linked to a valid ID there, so a third step at the access points is required. Barcodes, QR codes, and even physical checks of game tickets increase the queueing time at access points significantly, resulting in annoyed fans. Facial recognition systems, such as the TrustPass solution, greatly reduce waiting times at stadium entrances. Eliminating queueing at access points removes the mental burden of missing out on the game due to entrance issues for fans, and allows for better operations management for the clubs.

Another crucial line to consider is at the concession stands for food and drinks. Fans understandably don’t want to miss any game action due to long waits for refreshments during half-time. Here, biometrics offer a solution that benefits both fans and clubs, which is discussed in the next paragraph.

Frictionless Payment Processes

Facial payment technology enables fans to make purchases more quickly than even contactless cards. Moreover, this payment data, when linked to individual fans, provides clubs with valuable insights for marketing optimization, but also to enhance their logistical efficiency on matchday. The evolution of payment processes within stadiums reflects the shift towards digitalization. The transition from closed-loop to open-loop payment systems demonstrates the industry’s adaptability.

Closed-loop systems, involving RFID cards linked to season passes, allow clubs to track financial behavior but pose limitations for non-season ticket holders. Open-loop systems, on the other hand, offer convenience by allowing payments with banking cards but lack data-capturing capabilities for clubs. Biometric payment solutions, such as facial recognition for purchases, address these issues by linking payment data to individuals, providing valuable insights for the optimization of inventory management and marketing personalization. This technology offers convenience and a sense of safety, especially in post-pandemic times.


The journey towards creating frictionless stadiums and the ultimate fan experience is a blend of technological innovation, enhanced security, and improved fan convenience. By addressing the challenges and focusing on the seamless integration of technology, sports organizations can significantly elevate the fan experience, ensuring that attending live events remains an attractive, enjoyable, and secure option for fans worldwide.

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