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Automated Passport Control: An Innovative Technological Solution and Collaborative Approach to Improving Travel Efficiency

Release Date: 
May 8, 2013

RICHMOND, BRITISH COLUMBIA—U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Vancouver Airport Authority announced today a new program, Automated Passport Control, an expedited customs entry process that will allow eligible passengers traveling from Vancouver International Airport (YVR) to the U.S. to clear customs more efficiently, while still ensuring the same high standard of safety and security. This partnership is the first-of-its-kind and aims to help travelers move more quickly through the CBP preclearance inspection process by allowing entry of passport information at a self-service kiosk.

 

A US-bound traveler (l) utilizes the new Automated Passport Control kiosk at Vancouver International Airport with assistance from Acting Deputy Assistant Commissioner, OFO, John Wagner (Center) and YVR Vice President, Kevin Molloy.

A US-bound traveler (l) utilizes the new Automated Passport Control kiosk at Vancouver International Airport with assistance from Acting Deputy Assistant Commissioner, OFO, John Wagner (Center) and YVR Vice President, Kevin Molloy.

"Increasing efficiency and streamlining processes are critical components of CBP's modernization efforts at ports of entry," said Thomas S. Winkowski, acting CBP Commissioner. "Travelers will still speak with a CBP officer after using the Automated Passport Control kiosks, however this will allow for faster processing and increased focus on the traveler."

U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Vancouver Airport Authority worked together to implement Automated Passport Control. The Airport Authority developed the concept and built out the technology; CBP partnered with YVR to allow this technology to be implemented and ensuring CBP security and privacy requirements were incorporated. Automated Passport Control does not require pre-registration, is easy to use and maintains the highest levels of protection when it comes to the handling of personal data or information. As a result, travelers will experience shorter wait times, less congestion, and faster processing at YVR.

"Vancouver Airport Authority is proud to have pioneered the technology and hardware and partnered with U.S. Customs and Border Protection on the implementation of Automated Passport Control at YVR," said Larry Berg, President and CEO, Vancouver Airport Authority. "The Airport Authority set the benchmark for this type of program when we worked with Canada Border Services Agency to create Automated Border Clearance for travelers returning to Canada. Automated Passport Control has the ability to set the global standard for improving passenger efficiency when travelling to the United States - and is an example of yet another YVR first."

Instead of filling out a declaration card and taking their travel documents to a CBP officer, passengers who are eligible and choose to use Automated Passport Control can proceed directly to a self-service kiosk in the U.S. Customs and Border Protection preclearance area. Travelers will follow the on-screen instructions to scan their U.S. passport, answer the customs declaration questions using the touch screen, receive a receipt confirming their information and proceed to the CBP officer to finalize processing. The kiosk allows up to four people residing at the same address to be processed together.

For industry representatives interested in more information on Automated Passport Control, contact your local airport authority or CBP port director for airport technical design standards and business requirements.