Facial recognition

Aena and Iberia launch the first facial recognition project at Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas airport with registration through the Aena or Iberia App. This new service allows you, after having registered once through the App (Aena or Iberia) or facial recognition machines, to pass through the security checkpoints and board more quickly.

What do I need to do to participate in this project?

  • Fly from Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas airport with Iberia to Brussels or Asturias and board through gates J40 or J58 of Terminal T4.
  • Be over 18.
  • Have an electronic DNI or passport and boarding card. If you have a DNI 3.0 or e-passport you can register from the Aena App as long as the device is Android and has NFC. If you have a DNI 2.0 you can register with the system on the facial recognition machines located between Iberia desks 847 and 848 (T4) or in front of the family checkpoint (T4).

How do I use the facial recognition service?

  • Register on the facial recognition machine or the Aena App. Once registered, you will no longer have to show your documentation at the subsequent stages (although you will have to have it on you).
  • Go to the security checkpoints in T4 (general or fast track) and look for the exclusive access point with this icon. The camera will verify your identity and you will be able to access directly.
  • Boarding gates J40 and J58 are offering a new access system that verifies your identity and enables you to board planes directly without showing any documentation.

The Aena Biometrics project is already a resounding success, as shown by the recognitions received: Best Innovation Project by the Association for the Development of the Customer Experience (DEC) and the 2019 Computerworld prize. These recognitions positively value technology as a driving force behind the customer experience and the digitalisation of organisations.

As part of its Aena Airport 4.0 strategy, Aena seeks to develop airports in the society of the future as a framework for integrating new technologies and innovative trends applicable to the airport setting.

Check-in desks

The check-in desks are located at the following points:

You can see which check-in desk is assigned to your flight on the information screens.

You can consult the terminal and check-in desks for your airline at the following link:

Where do I have to check in?

For more information on carryon and checked luggage, please see the following link:

Hand and checked-in luggage New Window

You should arrive at the airport with enough time to avoid unexpected problems. The general rule is:

  • Non-Schengen flights: 3 hours before the scheduled departure (20 minutes more if the flight leaves from Satellite Terminal T4).
  • Domestic and Schengen flights: 2 hours before the scheduled departure (20 minutes more if the flight leaves from Satellite Terminal T4).
Automatic check-in machines

The airport has self-service check-in machines that also print your boarding pass. They are located next to the check-in counters. The airlines offering this service at Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas airport are:

There are self-service check-in machines for people with reduced mobility (PRM).The airlines offering this service are:

Checking in online

Most airlines allow passengers to check in online on their website prior to travelling to the airport. You will receive your boarding pass when checking in, allowing you to proceed directly to the security checkpoints if you are only travelling with carry-on luggage.

Remember to print off all your travel documents (e-ticket, boarding pass, etc.). Please note that some airlines charge a fee to reissue boarding passes at the airport.

Check with your airline the availability of this service

Mobile online check-in

With mobile online check-in, you can check in and receive your boarding pass on your mobile device via email, SMS or mobile applications.

The security checkpoints at Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport have specific access for passengers with a mobile boarding pass. The device must be passed through an automatic reader that will read the data codes sent by the airline.

Check with your airline the availability of this service

Security checks

Passengers accessing boarding areas must pass through a metal-detector arch at a security checkpoint and their hand luggage and any other objects that they are carrying (coats, jackets, mobile phones, keys) must undergo an x-ray inspection.

Before going through the security checkpoint, passengers will be asked for their boarding pass.

To help objects pass through the scanner, particularly in the case of small articles, you must use the special trays available to passengers.

Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport has special access for people with reduced mobility and families with prams or pushchairs.

All terminals have preferential access (Fast Track) for first class and business passengers travelling with certain airlines and companies.

Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport has installed information screens at the Terminals T1, T2 and T4 security checkpoints so passengers can see the estimated time this process takes. Security check times are automatically updated every three minutes, letting users manage their time more efficiently for greater peace of mind at the airport.

Passport Control

If the destination of your flight is a non-Schengen country, you must go through document control.

The basic travel document is a passport, although you can travel to some countries with a National ID card (DNI). Some countries also require a visa, vaccination certificate, passport valid for 6 months after the date of arrival, etc. Please ask your airline company.

More information about Documents for travel


The boarding gates are located at the following points:

Please check the information screens to find your boarding gate. Please pay attention to these screens because Madrid-Barajas Airport does not make PA system announcements about boarding gates or changes made to existing gates.

The Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas boarding area includes a large shopping area where special offers and discounts are available in the duty free shops and well-known fashion, accessories, electronics, sports, gifts and toy outlets. Enjoy a wide range of quality cafeterias and restaurants and relax in our VIP lounges. The entire shopping area has numerous information screens so that you can keep track of your boarding gate at all times.

At the boarding gate, you must show the airline personnel documentation to prove your identity. Please ask your airline about valid documentation to present to their personnel.