Airport security is increasingly intensive, can affect the speed of recovery travel | Instant News

As the government began to lift barriers to cross-border movement during the pandemic, attention to immigration clearance procedures at the airport began to emerge.

• Complex custom clearance may now require three hours before flight • Technology can speed up the process and encourage people to fly again • Destinations with efficient immigration permits will be most preferred among travelers
As the government began to lift barriers to cross-border movement during the pandemic, attention to immigration clearance procedures at the airport began to emerge.
In Malaysia, passengers have been advised to arrive at the airport three hours before their flight – compared to the usual two – to complete new safety and cleaning procedures, which include temperature filtering.
Travelers departing from the airport may need to start customs clearance three hours before their flight
The extent to which the expected health and safety screening process at Singapore Changi Airport is still uncertain, as the city state begins to restart business and public activities gradually only today (2 June).
Manila in the Philippines has a more tedious immigration permit procedure for arrivals than for departures, but at press time, it is not yet known whether this procedure will be maintained after the airport reopens for commercial flights.
Passengers who leave only need to take the temperature, while passengers who arrive must undergo a 14-day swab and quarantine test which can be shortened to three to five days if the test results prove negative.
In an online business meeting with the PATA Philippine Chapter and the IATA Association of Philippine Travel Agents (PIATA), Ed Monreal, general manager of the Manila International Airport Authority, said that it took three hours for passengers to be cleared for international flights.
There has been talk in the travel industry that airport security permits in the post-Covid-19 world can take between four and six hours. A Forbes report published on May 10 suggested that the process, which could soon include passenger sanitation and luggage, would take up to four hours.
Monreal stressed that milling around the pre-departure area must be prevented, because it violates the social distance requirements. As such, a three-hour airport security permit must be sufficient and made possible by a fully manned check-in counter and relying on online processes to minimize interaction between passengers and airline staff.
Grifton Medina, head of the port operations division, revealed that the paper arrival card will be replaced with a digital version, allowing the Philippine immigration system to see in real time when passengers enter from the port of origin and use data to track contacts faster.
It is not only the responsibility of the airport and immigration authorities to develop seamless permit procedures for passengers. The airline also has a role to play, at the ticketing and check-in stages, as well as the starting and dropping stages.
To minimize cross-contamination during the airport check-in and cleaning process, AirAsia has implemented a fully contactless check-in procedure that allows passengers to use their smartphone to interact with the stand-in check-in kiosk via QR code to print their boarding passes and bagging tags. .
Santisuk Klongchaiya, CEO of Thai AirAsia, said: “We also make it possible after immigration, travelers do not need to make contact with anything else before they board the plane; at the departure gate, they only need to show the code on their smartphone to the staff. ”
Technical assistance Digital technology and automation used by airports and airlines for the arrival and departure of passengers may be the key to returning more smoothly to travel in the post-Covid world.
Real time data, biometric check-in, and other contactless solutions can rise as a priority, because they can shorten the total passenger cleaning time; much needed compensation when the flight hub might have to take into account longer health and safety protocols.
Patel: passengers will demand easy-to-use solutions from airport operators because customs is increasingly complex
Sumesh Patel, President of SITA, Asia Pacific, estimates that when faced with increasing complexity in customs, passengers will “increasingly demand easy-to-use solutions” from airport operators, who must be prepared to utilize real time data that includes “knowledge” where tickets purchased, passenger nationality, destination of travel, past trips, transit and embarkation information “.
Not only are automated and contactless processes that can meet new needs for social distance at the airport, but they will also serve to shorten what might be a longer trip for passengers.
Patel explained: “Digital technology and automation will play an important role in meeting these new requirements. Contactless and self-service technology at every step will facilitate the flow of passengers, cutting queues while ensuring a passenger experience that is socially friendly. ”
An obstacle might occur to make a rebound trip. While industry players agreed on the need for safe and efficient measures at opening airports to encourage recovery of travel, they hampered the possibility of long waits to clear immigration procedures.
Laurent Kuenzle, CEO of Asian Trails, said the long process would not be “conducive to travel”.
If this becomes the norm, he estimates people will travel less and stay on an annual vacation.
Kuenzle said: “Personally, I think a four-hour airport permit is ridiculous and there must be a more efficient way to make passengers feel safe.”
Stephan Roemer, CEO of Diethelm Travel, said how destinations handle immigration procedures and permits will play a big role in revitalizing their tourism sector.
He noted: “Those who are able to handle tourism adequately will be the ones tourists want to visit. In the hands of the country that they want to welcome tourists. ”
Kuenzle agreed, and said that tourism authorities must lobby for the most efficient airport cleaning.
He said: “Challenges will come if one country handles procedures quickly and efficiently, and another does not. An efficient airport and country will have clear advantages. People will want to feel safe or they won’t travel, but there must be an efficient way to implement it. ”
Roemer added that clear communication, time frames and views from the authorities are also important for recovery, while Raaj Navaratnaa, general manager, New Asia Holiday Tours & Travel believes that travel agents will also be expected to provide customers with details of health and safety measures which is enforced at the destination. they sell.
A poll held among attendees at the Aviation Discussion for Business Events Industry webinar, held by the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau on May 21, found that respondents were at least waiting for a longer airport procedure (55 percent) and requirements for wearing masks during the flight (25 percent), no food or drinks were served during the flight (11 percent), and could not choose seats due to social distance requirements (10 percent).
At the same time, 50 percent chose overall cleanliness standards as a key factor that would revive the fastest air travel.
The majority (48 percent) said their next struggle was for domestic holiday travel while only 19 percent would take domestic business trips soon. – Additional reporting by Anne Somanas, Rosa Ocampo, Marissa Carruthers and S Puvaneswary

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