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Seattle airport helping travelers avoid lines with mobile food ordering and delivery to gate via robot

A food-delivery robot at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. (SEA Photo)

Seattle-Tacoma International Airport is using tech to make it easier to eat on the fly.

A mobile food ordering service called Order SEA — that could even include gate delivery by a robot named Gita — was introduced earlier this summer and is expanding to include more eateries. The goal is to help travelers avoid standing in lines and expand the options for dining without having to leave a concourse.

Port of Seattle Commissioner Sam Cho called waiting in line “the least fun and most stressful part of any trip” and said technology can make the airport experience a better one.

A sign promoting mobile food ordering at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. (SEA Photo)

There are 17 restaurants listed on the mobile and online ordering website including Trail Head BBQ & Bar, McDonald’s, Greedy Cow Burger, Pei Wei and more. Since the soft launch of Order SEA, more than 1,200 orders have been placed, including over 500 for gate delivery, Sea-Tac said in a news release Thursday.

Once through TSA security checkpoints, travelers can place orders through the Order SEA website or FlySEA app and pay by phone. The service is powered by Servy’s Grab Airport Marketplace, an e-commerce platform that connects customers to airport restaurants and retailers, in partnership with AtYourGate.

The airport is also helping customers avoid lines while waiting for TSA screening with SEA Spot Saver, a digital reservations program that was first rolled out in May. The free service is designed as a virtual queuing system to help people avoid standing in crowded security lines where social distancing is difficult. Users can reserve a spot in advance and will be notified when to proceed to a TSA checkpoint.