BANGKOK The first automated passport checkpoints opened at the weekend at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport in a bid to reduce long queues at immigration checkpoints.
The automated channels are now open to Singaporean travellers in the first phase of a project to introduce automated checks for foreign passport holders.
Thai nationals have been using automated checkpoints for more than five years, but the at least one official is on duty to assist travellers who are not confident with the automated process.
More nationalities will be added later this year, but it the list will depend on security considerations as well as the importance of travel markets for Thailand. They are likely to be based on profiling of nationalities for potential terrorist and security risks as well as considering those who are likely to seek employment in Thailand illegally.
Officials said the automated passport check channel was in line with the country’s Thailand 4.0 initiatives to embrace technology.
Both Suvarnahbumi and Don Mueang airports are suffering heavy congestion at immigration and security checkpoints mainly due to the Thailand’s popularity as a major tourist destination.
Source : ttrweekly.com