It's supposed to help things go smoother at customs.
Pretty well everyone has seen Toronto Pearson Airport hit hard with long lines and wait times in recent weeks, and now the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) is testing out some new technology that will hopefully make things "better" and "faster" for international fliers passing through the airport.
Earlier this week, the CBSA announced on social media that they've put in two new electronic gates (or "eGates") in Terminal 1 at Pearson, and will add more of them throughout the summer.
All international travellers who are 16 or older can use them in order to send in their customs and immigration declaration, and confirm their identity too.
"To save time at the eGate, travellers can also prepare their customs and immigration declaration in advance of flying into Canada using the web version of ArriveCan," senior spokesperson for the CBSA, Judith Gadbois-St-Cyr, told Narcity via email.
So, how exactly do these work?
Travellers will scan their travel document (like their passport, for example) at the eGate, then let the device snap a pic to compare it to what was just scanned. The eGate will then print out a confirmation receipt and then swing open its doors to let the flier continue on to a Border Services Officer.
"If a traveller has submitted an Advance CBSA Declaration through ArriveCan, they will be provided the option to review and edit and submit their declaration on the eGate screen," Gadbois-St-Cyr said.
According to the CBSA, these new electronic gates, coupled with their Primary Inspection Kiosks, "will improve the flow of traffic at the arrivals hall" as it'll free up the kiosks for larger groups while solo travellers can go through the eGate.
A recent press release from Transport Canada said the wait times at Pearson have already gotten a lot better due to all of the recent travel changes lately. According to the feds, over 90% of fliers are being screened within 15 minutes at security lines.
That being said, the feds also added that more work still needs to be done to combat airport delays as they kick off the summer travel season.
This article’s cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.
Before you get going, check our Responsible Travel Guide so you can be informed, be safe, be smart, and most of all, be respectful on your adventure.
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