A new service that enables the use of Emirates ID cards to pass through automated immigration gates at Dubai International (DXB) is gaining popularity, with more than 234,000 UAE residents using it during its phased roll out.
Completely free of charge and requiring no pre-registration, the new service makes passing through immigration Smart Gates fast and convenient for all UAE residents. The first of its kind in the region, it is the result of the joint efforts of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA), the Emirates Identity Authority and Dubai Airports.
The new service, available on all 127 Smart Gates across all three terminals at Dubai International, has been enabled by creating a secure and efficient link between various operational systems and databases managed by Emirates Identity Authority, GDRFA and Dubai Airports. Upon inserting the Emirates ID Card into the Smart Gate, the system can quickly, accurately and efficiently confirm the identity, travel plans and eligibility of UAE residents to enter and depart the country.
General Mohammad Al Marri, Director General of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs said, “Creating a system that enhances both security and passenger convenience is a breakthrough for managing the borders in the UAE, and responds to calls from our leadership to provide services that make the passenger journey as smooth as possible.”
Paul Griffiths CEO of Dubai Airports added, “With a transaction time that averages 10-15 seconds this is clearly a smarter way to travel. It speeds up the immigration process significantly and shortens queues. Our focus going forward is to get more residents using it.”
Smart gates provide the dual benefit of improving service whilst boosting capacity, both of which are critical elements of Dubai Airports’ DXB Plus programme, which aims to expand the airport’s capacity to 118 million by 2023.
All UAE residents holding a valid Emirates ID card who are older than 18 years can take advantage of the new system by using the card at any of the self-service gates at arrivals and departures across all three terminals at DXB. Families travelling with children below the age of 18 can approach the manned counter adjacent to the smart gates to complete the immigration process.
Dubai International was the first airport in the region and among the first globally to introduce automated immigration gates in 2002.