The Vancouver International Airport is introducing a new self-serve baggage drop system that it says will speed things up and ease congestion for passengers who want to check their luggage in the airplane's cargo hold.

The new self-drop units were designed and built in Vancouver by engineers from YVR and Glidepath with input from a design firm in the city. The airport is touting them as accessible, efficient and intuitive and about four times faster than the current bag check system.

"This is all about getting people through the terminal faster," said Craig Richmond, president and CEO of the Vancouver Airport Authority.

He explained passengers will be able to approach the unit and scan their boarding pass to get a luggage tag which they can attach to their bag themselves. Then, passengers proceed to load the bag onto the conveyer belt.

He said this conveyor is unique because it's accessible on all sides by ramps and the belt itself is only 10 centimeters off the floor.

"You can easily use it if you're a wheelchair user," he said.

The ramps, however, aren't quite flush with the ground so some lifting will still be involved.

There are several other things indicators that make dropping bags clear for travellers, Richmond said, including lights that indicate when to put the bag on the conveyer.

"If you stand on it it's going to stop. It's not going to move until you put a bag on it."

And another feature: the kiosk will tell you if your bag is too heavy.

Richmond said the airport is going to begin by installing the kiosks, called CHECKITXPRESS, throughout its domestic and international check-in areas. They also expect to sell more of the units to other airports.

"We expect a lot of interest," he said of the kiosks.

Although YVR is automating the bag drop part of the airport, he said that won't eliminate the need for airline agents who are important for answering customer questions and resolving flight issues.