After the introduction of Smart Gates system at Sharjah International Airport, passengers can scan passports and boarding cards in fewer than 20 seconds when they are departing or arriving.
Launched on 9 July by the Sharjah Airport Authority in partnership with the GDRFAS (General Directorate of Residency and Foreign Affairs) at its passport control, it lets passengers avoid long queues to get their passports stamped for entries and exits.
This Smart Gates system had a soft launch on a pilot basis in November 2016 and 850,000 passengers have been successfully able to use the system until now.
Reported to be using a very precise and efficient process, it reads and scans passport information by recording biometric data, after which the Smart Gates compares the information in the passport with the information of the passenger saved in the system.
Ali Salem Al Midfa, Chairman of Sharjah Airport Authority, was quoted by Gulf News as saying that the Smart Gates will accelerate the process at passport control, reduce waiting time and make easier the movement of passengers as their footfall continues to increase at Sharjah Airport.
He added that in the past passengers needed to wait for an average of 10 minutes, but now with the Smart Gates system, they can pass through in less than 20 seconds.
A total 16 Smart Gates have been put in place at the passport control area of the airport, with eight being deployed at the arrivals and eight at the departures, allowing passengers to scan their passports and boarding cards.
Al Midfa said that the existing manual passport control counters will simultaneously continue to operate in order to complement the smart system.
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