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Would you pay £50 to push to the front of the immigration queue?

A new initiative to reduce delays at the immigration desk at major UK airports is soon to be launched. The system, which will be introduced at Stansted airport before it is extended to Heathrow’s Terminal 4, will mean travellers can pay an upcharge of up to £50 to use fast-track gates, allowing passengers to cut out the wait which can be up to 45 minutes in some airports!

Immigration Halls will be installed with biometric passport readers, and those passengers who have the recently introduced passport will be able to jump the queue free of charge. As only 19 million Britons currently have biometric passports, frequent flyers that have the old-style passports may find it worth their while to upgrade to a new biometric passport.

Luton and Liverpool airports already have a programme which allows passengers leaving the country to jump the security queue by paying a surcharge. This idea is the latest in a long string of new initiatives to increase revenues in the air travel.

At Tensator are continually working together with Airports across the world seeking to reduce queue times, and have recently trialled our eQ™ Single Line Queuing system within a UK Immigration Hall. Our research showed that our electronic queuing call forward system could increase throughput by 5% at all immigration desks, and reduce service times by 28% (approximately 5 seconds per transaction).

It’s always intriguing to hear people’s views…
Are you a frequent flyer who would benefit from a fast-track system?
Would you be willing to pay the fast-track price or would you upgrade from the old-style passports to a new biometric passport to beat the queue for free?

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