The first nine new generation SmartGates are now operational at Auckland Airport and will help to expedite the departures experience for international passengers thanks to the use of a one-step process.
“As 75% of international travellers pass through Auckland Airport, it made sense to introduce them here in time for the busy season,” explained New Zealand Customs Minister Nicky Wagner.
She added: “The first of their kind in New Zealand, this next generation technology performs passport and emigration checks at the gate, making it quicker and easier for passengers. The new technology incorporates the passport scanner into the gate, eliminating the need for the kiosk and ticket. Departing passengers scan their passport and step up to the biometric scanner, which is faster and more efficient than the current two-step process.”
The four SmartGates that were previously in use have been relocated from departures to arrivals, so passengers arriving in New Zealand can make use of them.
The installation of the new e-gates at Auckland Airport is part of the New Zealand Government’s $6.6 million investment in doubling the number of SmartGates in the country’s airports. A total of 29 new e-gates will be installed over the next 18 months, including at Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown airports.
Wagner stated: “The expansion and modernisation of SmartGate will help manage the increasing numbers of travellers, which is expected to grow by 2.3 million to about 13.3 million by 2019. The new gates ensure legitimate travellers can enjoy faster border processing and officers can focus more on the high-risk travellers.”