U.K. to Open ePassport Gates to U.S. Citizens

By Anna Breuer on 23 April 2019
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Passport control at Heathrow

Passport control at Heathrow

The United Kingdom announced plans to allow travelers from seven countries, including the United States and Canada, to use ePassport gates, or e-gates, when arriving at the country’s airports starting in June of this year.

The list of countries whose citizens will be eligible to use the e-gates, also includes Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, and South Korea.

The United Kingdom won’t require these travelers to fill out a landing card either.

“The expanded access to ePassport gates and the withdrawal of landing cards is part of our work to transform the U.K.’s border, providing a quicker, seamless experience for passengers that is built around digital systems,” said U.K. Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes.

Currently, ePassport gates are only available to those residing in the European Economic Area.

Chancellor to the Exchequer Philip Hammond said that the reason for the change was to “send a message loud and clear to the rest of the world: Britain is open for business” following Brexit.

The so-called e-gates were first introduced in the United Kingdom in 2008. Over 250 are currently in place at 22 airports and rail terminals across the country.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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