Dubai Airport readies for contactless departures

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Dubai Airport readies for contactless departures

Dubai - New technology to offer seamless departures and arrivals of passengers at the airport within seconds.

By Abdul Basit

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Published: Wed 21 Oct 2015, 10:14 PM

Last updated: Thu 22 Oct 2015, 10:44 AM

Immigration counters will soon be relics of the past as Dubai International airport is pressing on with plans for contactless departures as early as next year. And since sky is not the limit when it comes to passenger comfort, Emirates passengers could get the immigration facility on board before landing at Dubai airport.
"We are coordinating with other partners and the contactless process will be launched in the first quarter of 2016," Major General Obaid Muhair bin Surour, Deputy Director of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs-Dubai, told Khaleej Times on the sidelines of Gitex Technology Week on Tuesday.
In the first phase, departure will be without immigration counters and in the second phase it will be implemented for arrivals, Maj-Gen Surour explained.
He also talked about the scenario where passengers can complete the immigration or smart gate process on board Emirates planes before landing at Dubai International airport.
The combination of advanced passenger information, biometrics, and IRIS on the move technology (IOM) will help the seamless departures and arrivals of passengers at the airport within seconds, he explained.
Emaratech - the leading online, smart and technology solutions company in the Arab region - is behind all smart gates in Dubai.
Earlier this year, Emaratech showcased IOM technology in Dubai with its top official saying: "We are currently working closely with our strategic partner, the General Directorate for Residency and Foreigners Affairs, to maximise the benefit of having IOM. We believe that IRIS on the move is the future of intelligent travelling."
Maj-Gen Surour mentioned that Dubai Airport already has 125 e-gates and smart gates where departure and arrival is possible without stopping at immigration counters. Users of these gates require mandatory registration of their passport and national ID.
Dubai's second airport, Al Maktoum International Aiport, does not have e-gates or smart gates at the moment. Maj-Gene Surour said the new airport will have them next year. Emaratech is a strategic partner in this upgrade, he added.
The smart gate is recognised as the most efficient and advanced around the world from a technical, operational and security point of view. The smart gate uses IRIS cameras to capture facial and eye biometrics of registered users. Passengers can speed through immigration in as little as 20 seconds. This means, three passengers will be able to proceed each minute using the smart Gate.
The smart gates are free to use by registered UAE citizens and residents. There are 20 registration stations throughout Dubai for travellers to register their biometrics for smart gate passes.

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