Yes we all know how tedious it is to have to wait in line at immigration after a long flight. Sometimes especially at peak times on arrival at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport, it is not unusual for arriving passengers to have to wait up to 30 minutes to pass through the busy immigration desks.
Well here’s some good news for all travelers flying to the Land of smiles. The government of Thailand have recently introduced a new security procedure called the Advance Passenger Processing System (APPS), which is believed will speed up the process and reduce passengers waiting time.
Apart from Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi the system has also been implemented at Bangkok’s second airport Don Mueang plus at , Phuket, Chiang Mai, Hat Yai and Mae Fa Luang Chiang Rai International Airports. Eventually all 36 local airports will also have the new system in place.
This move is part of on-going improvements to the country’s security systems, aimed at ensuring that local and international travelers can pass through the kingdom’s main gateways safely.
The APPS enables Thai immigration officials to run instant background checks on inbound passengers, based on their personal passport information. These details can then be checked against a list of blacklisted or banned individuals. This ensures that any undesirables are stopped before they officially enter Thailand.
It is also believed that the new system will reduce the time it takes to pass through immigration, as passenger details are instantly checked against a database held by the Immigration Department and blacklisted passengers are immediately flagged.
The APPS will be funded by adding 35 Baht to the price of all tickets in and out of the kingdom for Thai and foreign travelers. While the system is in its early stages, Fast-Pass privileges, either from the airlines or AOT will be suspended.
Now that’s another reason to tell your friends and family to visit the country we know as The Land of the Smiles!