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Changi Airport Implements Automated Immigration clearance for all Singapore Visitors

All foreigners arriving in Singapore, regardless of nationality, can now use the automated lanes at Changi Airport to clear immigration.

The feature was rolled out in early May, allowing even first-time visitors to Singapore to use the automated lanes without any prior enrolment in the system. This is part of the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority’s (ICA) new clearance concept announced in 2019, which aims to provide faster and more secure immigration clearance.

Previously, the automated lanes could be used only by Singapore residents and passport holders from 60 jurisdictions. More than 160 automated lanes were installed in 2023, with another 230 lanes to be set up in 2024. ICA intends to install about 800 such lanes across all of Singapore’s checkpoints by 2026.

Mr. Atul Sethi, a 46-year-old businessman from India who was passing through Singapore on his way back from the US, expressed his impression with the automated gates. He used them for the first time on May 16 and cleared immigration in under a minute. “It was very delightful, coming to Singapore and using the new facilities here. After staying in the US immigration lines for an hour or so, what a pleasure it is to clear (immigration) right here,” he said. “Almost no human interaction required. The technology is a godsend, and we look forward to coming (here) again very soon.”

The roll-out is another step towards passport-free and contactless immigration clearance at all checkpoints, which Singapore intends to introduce by the end of 2024. Assistant Commissioner Phua Chiew Hua, deputy director at ICA’s operations division, said on May 16 that arriving Singapore residents and all departing travellers will be able to enjoy contactless immigration clearance at Changi and Seletar airports, as well as Marina Bay Cruise Centre, by the end of the year.

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