January 8, 2018
Pepper the Robot Lands at New North American Airports
HMSHost brings robot to greet airport diners and offer menu recommendations
BETHESDA, MD — Pepper the robot is coming to an airport near you. Travelers can expect to see more of the 4-foot tall humanoid robot at select HMSHost North American airport restaurants. Pepper greets and engages traveling guests, provides menu details, and even offers menu recommendations.
Pepper is a new airport experience that will surprise and delight guests and start their journey off with a fun, memorable experience. Pepper recently debuted at Avenue des Canadiens in Montréal–Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport where travelers can select to speak with Pepper in French or English. Pepper also debuted at the Washington Redskins Burgundy & Gold Club in Washington Dulles International Airport and at Point the Way Café in Los Angeles International Airport. In addition to these three new airports, Pepper will remain at HMSHost’s Pyramid Ale Taproom in Oakland International Airport.
“HMSHost is the industry leader in culinary innovation, but we’re also at the forefront of bringing travelers the latest airport dining technology to help ease their travels. We are excited to bring something as unique and entertaining as Pepper to help us further enhance the experience we offer our guests," said HMSHost Vice President of Innovation Jim Schmitz. “We’re thankful to these airports for being willing to explore innovative methods with us that bring new ways to elevate travelers’ journeys.”
Pepper customizes her features for each airport so her interactions with travelers will vary from location to location. At select locations, Pepper helps travelers with airport directions such as gates, the nearest restrooms, and finding other HMSHost-operated food and beverage options throughout the airport.
HMSHost launched a pilot program with SoftBank Robotics America in January 2017 to bring Pepper to her first North American airport location at Oakland International Airport to provide an entertaining and informative guest experience. Since then, Pepper has taken the airport by storm, entertaining guests, providing menu recommendations, helping with directions, and even posing for selfies.
Catch Pepper during your travels? Share your sighting with us using #MeetPepper.
HMSHost Leading the Industry
HMSHost is recognized by the industry as the top provider of travel dining with awards such as 2017 Best Overall Food & Beverage Operator (for the tenth consecutive year) and Food Operator with the Highest Regard for Customer Service (for the eighth year) by Airport Revenue News. USA Today 10Best Readers’ Choice Travel Awards recognized HMSHost’s Dale Jr.’s Whisky River at Charlotte Douglas International Airport as Best Airport Bar and Best Airport Sitdown Dining. HMSHost infuses innovation and culinary expertise into everything we do; with events such as the first-of-its-kind Airport Restaurant Month at more than 50 airports across North America, the award-winning Channel Your Inner Chef live culinary contest at Chicago O’Hare International Airport, and the Adrian Awards Gold winning campaigns, #HMSHostLove and Eat Well. Travel Further.
Global restaurateur HMSHost is a world leader in creating dining for travel venues. HMSHost operates in more than 120 airports around the globe and 99 travel plazas in North America. The Company has annual sales in excess of $3.1 billion and employs more than 39,500 sales associates worldwide. HMSHost is a part of Autogrill Group, the world’s leading provider of food & beverage services for people on the move. With sales of over €4.5 billion in 2016, the Group operates in 31 countries and employs over 57,000 people. It manages approximately 4,000 stores in about 1,000 locations worldwide. Visit HMSHost.com for more information and connect with HMSHost on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.