To enhance the airport experience, waiting times at international borders must be reduced. Long lines at passport control are not popular with travellers.
Delays will be reduced thanks to upcoming adjustments to the standards for entering Europe. ETIAS, or the European Travel Information and Authorisation System, will speed up border crossing.
ETIAS, which will be made available in November 2023, aims to make it easier for millions of travellers to pass borders into the Schengen Area. Below is further information regarding ETIAS’s advantages.
PASSENGERS WANT FASTER BORDER PROCESSES
According to the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) 2021 Global Passenger Survey (GPS), travellers:
- Are willing to share biometric date to speed-up border processes
- Want to spend less time queuing at the airport
In order to spend less time “being processed” or waiting in lines, travellers “want technology to work harder,” according to Nick Careen, Senior Vice President for Operations, Safety, and Security.
Governments, airports, and airlines are currently planning for the post-pandemic resumption of international travel. Plans are being developed in every sector to increase effectiveness over time.
ETIAS USES PASSENGER DATA FOR FASTER PROCESSING
76% of travellers are willing to share biometric information to speed up border procedures, according to the 2021 GPS. Compared to 46% in 2019, this is a considerable gain.
According to this data, the majority of consumers are willing to provide information to the government in order to enhance their travel experience. ETIAS will aid in achieving this objective.
Biometrics are used in the new entry/exit processes even though ETIAS does not collect biometric data (travellers are not required to supply biometric data like fingerprints when they apply).
ALL TRAVELLERS WILL UNDERGO PRE-DEPARTURE SCREENING UNDER ETIAS
ETIAS applicants must submit personal information, passport information, and health and security data. Passengers without a visa will be pre-screened prior to departure, cutting down on wait times at the airport.
Pre-departure inspections are not currently conducted on international visitors without a visa. Officials at the border conduct security inspections, which might take long.
With the new system, every traveller will have the necessary pre-clearance when they arrive at the airport, be it an ETIAS or a visa. Visitors from nations without visa requirements can check their eligibility to enter the Schengen Area with just a quick passport scan.
Note that ETIAS does not ensure admission to Europe. The right to refuse entrance lies with border authorities.
BIOMETRICS, THE ENTRY/EXIT SYSTEM, AND ETIAS
At external Schengen borders, the Entry/Exit System (EES) and ETIAS will shorten the time needed to pass passport control.
To automatically determine a visitor’s permissible stay in the Schengen Area and detect overstayers, EES employs biometric passport data.
Airports will have equipment in place. The photo page of each passenger’s biometric passport will be scanned, and they will also gaze at a screen.
The biometric data included in the passport is compared to the facial image. Once the holder of the passport has been given the all clear to travel, the gates will automatically open.
It should just take a few seconds to complete, which is quicker than manual processing.
DATA PROTECTION, A PRIORITY FOR PASSENGERS AND THE EU
Although travellers are willing to divulge personal information, data security is a worry. Travelers are curious about the storage, use, and sharing of personal data.
Data processing security will be upheld by the eu-LISA, national units, and the ETIAS Central Unit.
To prevent unwanted access to ETIAS data, encryption will be employed. Information will only be kept for as long as the visa waiver is in effect, or for a maximum of five years after the most recent ETIAS rejection or annulment.
Passengers and the European Union place a high importance on protecting personal data.
TRAVELLERS WILL SPEND LESS TIME QUEUING WITH ETIAS
People want to spend less time standing in line, according to the 2021 Global Passenger Survey, which was previously mentioned.
Queuing at security screening was cited as a major area for improvement by 41% of travellers.
When ETIAS is operational, visa-exempt travellers will undergo security screening prior to crossing the Schengen border. In the days preceding their journey, travellers will finish the registration procedure and get pre-approval.
It is anticipated that this new procedure may shorten lines for security screening. a benefit for all visitors to the Schengen Region.
COVID-19 AND PASSENGER HEALTH SCREENING
During COVID-19, airport processing delays are growing lengthier for travellers. Check-in and immigration take longer due to the need to verify additional documentation, such as COVID-19 immunisation records and passenger location forms.
Despite there being less travellers, delays are currently occurring at the airport. The length of time that such documentation will be needed is not yet known.
ETIAS will include health screening and endemic risk assessment. This is one more way the new travel authorization could reduce line wait times.
SUMMARY OF ETIAS BENEFITS FOR PASSENGERS
The following advantages will be available to passengers when ETIAS launches in November 2023:
- Simple online registration pre-departure
- More efficient border processing
- Less time spent waiting in queues
- Improved health and security screening
Overall, millions of visa-exempt travellers who pass through an external Schengen border each year should have a better experience thanks to ETIAS.