If you’ve ever gazed longingly at the other queues moving more quickly through the ePassport gates in a UK airport, wishing that Aussies could use them as well, your wish is about to come true.
Australian travellers touching down in the United Kingdom can now use ePassport gates to enter. As long as you have an electronically enabled passport, you’ll be able to pass through them with ease.
“I’m delighted that Australian nationals will benefit from their use and have a smooth beginning to their visit to our country,” Home Secretary Sajid Javid said in a statement.
“Our new global immigration and border system will improve security and fluidity for passengers coming to visit or work in the UK.
“Expanding the use of ePassport gates is a key part of this and allows us to improve passenger experience arriving in the UK while keeping our border secure.”
It is important to note that children aged between 12 and 17 must be accompanied by an adult to use the ePassport gates and those aged 11 and under will still need to see an immigration officer.
The government is also removing the need for Australian travellers and all other non-EEA countries to fill in landing cards upon arrival in the UK.
There are currently more than 264 ePassport gates in place across 15 airports and international rail terminals across the UK. They use facial recognition technology and check details against immigration and security watch lists.