Delhi International Airport has expedited the planned rollout of automated immigration E-Gates at its Cargo Terminal, which is now expected to be in place in July. This will enable passengers to pass through immigration without the presence of Immigration Officers. The programme has been called the ‘Trusted Travellers Programme’ and will enable passengers to have pre-approved immigration prior to arrival.
The initial plan is to have eight E-Gates implemented in the Cargo Terminal, equally distributed in the departures and arrivals area. Passengers will be able to use a QR-Code paperless pass to gain entry/exit from the terminal’s immigration area. The two primary aims are to reduce human to human contact, thereby potentially reducing the spread of Covid-19, as well as reducing the time taken to clear immigration. At present, immigration clearance takes approximately 90 to 120 seconds, and this could be reduced to between 30 to 40 seconds.
A spokesperson for Delhi International Airport Limited (who operate the Airport) said, “This new paperless and contactless facility, amid a pandemic situation, is aimed at minimising human interface at the cargo terminals. This will not only bring more efficiency in the process but also reduce paperwork.”
Inspiration Gained From United States Global Entry Programme
The new E-Gates facility has been modelled on the United States Global Entry Programme, whereby citizens from various countries can clear immigration expeditiously. This is achieved by the passenger presenting their passport at the E-Gates, having their fingerprint taken and completing a Customs Form. Thereafter, they will receive a confirmation receipt that they have successfully cleared immigration and can proceed to baggage claim, followed by immediate exit from the Airport.
The E-Gates at Delhi International Airport are expected to become mandatory for all eligible passengers by 15th July 2021.