Praise where praise is due- or am I just lucky?Back to Forum
For as long as I can remember- well, certainly this year- whenever I have been through Heathrow immigration in T3,4 or 5 the automated passport barriers have been working well, with virtually no queue. The longest I have waited is under five minutes.
Am I just lucky, or does the system now work properly?
1 user thanked author for this post.7 Nov 2023
I’d echo this, again not sure if it’s been luck, but have breezed through the e-gates this year at LHR.
A bit busy at LGW S on one occasion.
Now having a blue passport, the heavy duty page does tend to get read far more quickly than with my older, now expired passport.7 Nov 2023
no issues on wait time, even with long lines i would say max wait has been 10 mins. But only 50% of the time the gates recognize my passport, recently started to have same problem at other non Uk airports and even manual desks have problems so looks like its my passport problem, not LHR E-gates8 Nov 2023
The first time I tried to use the e-gates at Gatwick with a brand new passport issued last November the machine couldn’t read the chip. I tried two or three different gates and none of them could read it. I was directed to the manned desk where the officer tried and his device couldn’t read it either. He told me that the new passports weren’t of very good quality and he wasn’t surprised.
I wasn’t at all happy about that because I was faced with the prospect of having to queue at staffed immigration desks after every trip I take for the next ten years. I was ready to complain to the Passport Office as I’d just paid £85 for a defective passport.
The next time I traveled the e-gates read it perfectly and have done so for each subsequent trip I have taken since then. I’ve no idea why things refused to work on that first day.9 Nov 2023
Chris in Makati – there was an interesting (and entertaining) programme on BBC2 last night about the history and development of UK passports, fronted by the wonderful Prof Hannah Fry.
It may be that when you first used your passport at LGW the IT at the e-gates had not yet caught up with the latest developments. These are designed to combat the most fantastic forgers and the claim is that they cannot be forged. We will see ……….
1 user thanked author for this post.9 Nov 2023
Slightly off thread, but I saw egates at Zurich for the first time, though they all had a big red “X” on them.
Likewise on arrival at Johannesburg, and they were not there last month, but again they were closed. My question here is, will they only be for SA Nationals or tourists as well? Problem for tourists is they are restricted to 90 days so makes me think they can’t use them?11 Nov 2023
The fact that tourists stay is limited doesn’t necessarily mean they couldn’t use e-gates. Other countries have implemented schemes where they can be used by tourists. For example, in Hong Kong frequent visitors can use the e-channel and are issued with a slip of paper informing them of their permitted length of stay.11 Nov 2023
I arrived in DXB the other week and as I approached the e-gates and was getting my passport out, photo page ready to scan my name popped up on the screen of the egates, asked me to look into the camera and then I was through. Didn’t even have to touch the passport on the machine. Now that is good tech.11 Nov 2023
RF2: “…………..Didn’t even have to touch the passport on the machine. Now that is good tech.”
This was shown in the BBC TV programme I mentioned above and it was suggested that it will become more universal in the near future.11 Nov 2023