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SITA Highlights Benefits of Automated Passport Control Services

August 2, 2014 Airport No Comments Email Email

Air transport IT specialist, SITA, which was the first to implement Phase III Automated Passport Control (APC) kiosks in the USA, today released a white paper detailing the benefits of the queue-busting technology. The paper shares case study examples which examine the successful implementation of the kiosks at Orlando International Airport (MCO).

U.S. airports housing busy immigration areas, such as MCO, recognize the need to expedite the greatest amount of passengers through Customs and Border Protection as efficiently as possible. According to the U.S. Travel Association, in 2013 alone, 69.6 million international tourists visited the United States. That number is expected to grow by 16 percent in three years to 80.7 million. Airport and community leaders share the universal fear that an international visitor’s negative experience at immigration—due to long queues and inefficiencies—can damage an airport’s or community’s reputation and reduce revenues.

As SITA’s white paper details, Phase III APC Kiosks have been proven to be an effective solution. The kiosks use advanced biometric capabilities to make immigration quick and seamless for passengers from all 38 Visa Waiver Program countries, from Europe, Asia, Australia and South America.

MCO was the first airport in North America to implement the kiosks. After implementation, the airport has reduced the amount of time required to process a 450-passenger international flight through immigration to just 30-35 minutes, without any additional personnel.

John Newsome, Information Technology Director at Greater Orlando Aviation Authority, said: “We needed to go to Phase III as fast as we could. SITA’s APC kiosks opened the eligibility for automated processing to passengers from Visa Waiver countries, specifically those entering MCO on flights from the U.K.”

Additionally, the paper offers information about Phase III APC kiosks’ sophisticated security features. Using biometric technology they ensure full U.S. Customs and Border Protection compliance and usher passengers through immigration in an efficient, three-step process which includes passport verification, advanced biometric capture and customs declaration entry.

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