Automated Passport Control Means Disappearing Queues at Airport

The newly installed, state-of-the-art machines will reportedly slash wait times in half say airport officials

Officials from Vaclav Havel International Airport have announced that they are expecting a much safer, much faster, check-in process with the Prague airport’s newly implemented self-service passport control.

How much faster? Speaking at a press conference yesterday, airport reps said that they predict check-in time to be shaved in half: the whole process is said to take just 15 seconds as opposed to the 30-40 second required prior to the machines.

The seventeen machines are now in operation at the airport in both the arrivals and departure areas. Installation costs were an estimated 61 million CZK.

The service may be used by passengers traveling to or departing to countries outside the EU or those arriving from countries outside of the EU.

The computer scans a traveler’s passport—the machine can read 2,897 types of passports from 206 countries—to confirm its authenticity then allows the passenger to the gate for facial recognition via a camera system.

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Each machine is monitored by police five officers.

While a time savings of 15 seconds may seem insignificant, consider that as of December 2016, the Prague airport reportedly handled 13 million passengers; that number could reach up to 14 million this year.

Vaclav Rehor, board chairman of Cesky Aeroholding told iDnes of the newly booted project: “It is obvious that the queues have disappeared.”

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