Start-up Fuel Matrix proposes weighing airline passengers to reduce emissions

A start-up wants to weigh airplane passengers before boarding, in an effort to reduce fuel use and costs.

Fuel Matrix CEO Roy Fuscone told Lonely Planet the move isn't about fat-shaming, or even charging based on weight - it's all about saving fuel.

"It's critical to know the actual weight an airline is carrying to ensure the correct fuel uplift."

His company wants to provide software to airlines to manage passenger weight. He's suggesting this be collected through discreet weigh stations at airports and is already talking to some in the UK about introducing pressure pads at bag drops or during a full-body scan.

Fuscone says data on passengers' weight will be held securely and protected using the same technology that protects facial recognition technology used at airports.

Lonely Planet reports most European airlines guess the weight of passengers according to the local aviation safety agency.

The Telegraph reports European Safety Agency's most recent figures came from a report in 2009 and put male passengers at 84.6 and female passengers at 66.5. Both figures include luggage.

Fuel Matrix is not the first company to suggest passengers are weighed - airline Finnair offered an optional weigh-in before boarding in 2017.

A spokesperson told The Telegraph it was to help get more precise figures for fuel use.

Samoa Air also wanted to weigh passengers and introduced a policy charging passengers by weight in 2013.

"The next step is for the industry to make those sort of changes and recognise that 'Hey, we are not all 72 kilograms anymore and we don't all fit into a standard seat,'' Chris Langton, Samoa Air chief executive told CNN at the time.

"What makes airplanes work is weight. We are not selling seats, we are selling weight."

Samoa Air ceased operations in 2015.