DUBAI: Be optimistic to bidding farewell to immigration counters as Dubai International airport is hopeful of making contactless departures operational as early as next year, according to a media report.
And since sky is not the limit when it comes to passenger comfort, Emirates passengers could get the immigration facility on board before landing at Dubai airport, reported Khaleej Times.
“We are coordinating with other partners and the contactless process will be launched in the first quarter of 2016,” Major General Obaid Muhair bin Surour, Deputy Director of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs-Dubai reportedly said on the sidelines of Gitex Technology Week.
While in the first phase, departure will be without immigration counters, arrivals will be included in the second phase, Maj-Gen Surour was quoted as saying in the report.
He also reportedly talked about the scenario where passengers can complete the immigration or smart gate process on board Emirates planes before landing at Dubai International airport.
The combination of advanced passenger information, biometrics, and IRIS on the move technology (IOM) will help the seamless departures and arrivals of passengers at the airport within seconds, he added.
Maj-Gen Surour also reportedly mentioned that Dubai Airport already has 125 e-gates and smart gates where departure and arrival is possible without stopping at immigration counters. Users of these gates require mandatory registration of their passport and national ID.
However, Dubai’s second airport, Al Maktoum International Airport, does not have e-gates or smart gates at the moment. Khaleej Times quoted Maj-Gen Surour as saying that the new airport will have them next year.
The smart gate is recognized as the most efficient and advanced around the world from a technical, operational and security point of view. The smart gate uses IRIS cameras to capture facial and eye biometrics of registered users. Passengers can speed through immigration in as little as 20 seconds. This means, three passengers will be able to proceed each minute using the smart Gate, said the Dubai-based news portal.
The smart gates are free to use by registered UAE citizens and residents. There are 20 registration stations throughout Dubai for travelers to register their biometrics for smart gate passes, reported Khaleej Times.