A U.K. initiative to speed up airport immigration lines for arriving visitors is now in effect. If you hold a passport from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, or the United States, you can now pass immigration using an electronic ePassport gate, a process that per The Points Guy “usually takes just seconds, rather than the hour-plus long waits some passengers may be used to, especially at Heathrow.” You will no longer need to wait in line to speak to an official. Here’s the list of U.K. airports where ePassport gates are currently available, per TPG:
- Birmingham Airport (BHX)
- Bristol Airport (BRS)
- Cardiff Airport (CWL)
- East Midlands Airport (EMA)
- Edinburgh Airport (EDI)
- Gatwick Airport (LGW; North and South Terminals)
- Glasgow Airport (GLA)
- Heathrow Airport (LHR; Terminals 2, 3, 4, and 5)
- London City Airport (LCY)
- Luton Airport (LTN)
- Manchester Airport (MAN; Terminals 1, 2 and 3)
- Newcastle Airport (NCL)
- Stansted Airport (STN)
The U.K.’s ePassport gates (read more about them here) are similar to the kiosks available at many U.S. airports now. As written in The Independent, they “use facial recognition technology to compare a passenger’s face to the digital image recorded in their passport. They are monitored by Border Force officers and anyone rejected at the gates will be sent to a manned passport check to have their identity and passport checked.”
Have you tried the ePassport gates as a U.S. passport holder? Share your experience in the comments!
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