The UAE’s two-month summer break is almost over, and airports across the country are preparing to welcome thousands of residents back from their vacation. This means airports will be much busier than usual.
Dubai International (DXB), the world’s biggest airport, alone is all set to welcome 3.3 million travellers over the next 13 days.
In an advisory issued on Wednesday, the airport’s operator said for those travelling with families, passengers over the age of 12 can use smart gates to speed up the passport control process. Travellers between the ages of 4 and 12 can use dedicated passport control counters to independently stamp their passports.
Passengers using smart gates can clear immigration formalities within seconds. Back in June, the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) announced that 9 million passengers travelled the smart way by using these gates in the first half of this year. This constitutes about 36 per cent of the 26 million passengers that passed through DXB.
There are 120 smart gates at the DXB. Registered passengers can pass through by “simply looking at the green light, with no need to scan a document”, according to the DXB website. This green light is located on top of the cameras that scan the gates.
Who can use them?
According to the GDRFA website, UAE and GCC citizens, residents, those eligible for visa on arrival, and travellers with pre-issued visas can use the gates. They, however, need to be registered and be taller than 1.2 metres.
How to check eligibility
According to Dubai Airports, all guests who have recently arrived at DXB are “likely to have been registered when they entered the immigration touchpoint”.
A new feature on the GDRFA website lets passengers check their eligibility to use the smart gates. Here’s how to do it:
>> Visit https://www.gdrfad.gov.ae/en/smart-gate-inquiry
>> Enter your Emirates ID or passport number.
>> Enter your date of birth and gender.
>> You will get one of two messages: “Record is registered. You can use smart gates” in green; or “Record is not registered. You need to be registered to use smart gates while travelling” in red.