Vancouver International Airport’s (YVR) technology development division, Innovative Travel Solutions (ITS), has updated its self-service border control solution, BorderXpress, to meet newly introduced biometric screening requirements in Canada.
According to the Government of Canada’s expanded biometric screening requirements, all primary inspection kiosks at major Canadian airports will require fingerprint verification for certain travelers from March 31, 2019. This includes temporary resident visa, study and work permit applicants (excluding US nationals), as well as all permanent residence applicants.
Steve Hankinson, vice president, innovation and planning, Vancouver Airport Authority, said, “The Government of Canada has stated that the collection of biometrics is a critical aspect of their immigration program and one that allows for accuracy in establishing a traveler’s identity.
“Our BorderXpress primary inspection kiosks are the first to be adapted to accommodate the needs of the Canadian government while also providing a border control solution that unites security, efficiency and innovation to transform the passenger experience.”
Biometrics, including fingerprints and photographs of the face, significantly increase the security of the border by collecting physical characteristics of an individual which when captured, can be used to verify the identity or check against other entities in the database.
Biometrics also help airports by reducing passenger wait times, improving passenger flow and operational efficiency. More than 70 countries around the world use the collection of biometrics as part of their immigration programs.
“As countries look for solutions to best handle passenger processing amid increased traffic flow, they are placing increased importance on modernizing border management through biometrics,” added Hankinson.
“Each country has its own immigration requirements and BorderXpress can be configured to meet those specific needs – not only with respect to air travel, but also sea and rail travel, where border management is also critically important.”
BorderXpress kiosks use an efficient two-step process to expedite the border clearance process, reducing passenger wait times by more than 60%. This results in cost and space savings and allows border officers to focus on maintaining the safety of the border.
BorderXpress provides better exception handling, is fully accessible to persons with disabilities, and can be configured with up to 35 different languages.
Interested in YVR’s border control policies? Linda Schucroft, director, Innovative Travel Solutions – Vancouver Airport Authority, will present ‘The future of border control’ at the Passenger Terminal Conference, which takes place during Passenger Terminal Expo, on March 26, 27 and 28, 2019, in London.