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Ten millionth traveller uses SmartGate

MEDIA RELEASE

17 September 2014

Ten millionth traveller uses SmartGate

The 10 millionth traveller to pass through SmartGate, Customs’ automated passenger processing system, was greeted by Customs Manager Passenger Operations, Peter Lewis today at Auckland International Airport.

“This is a huge milestone for us, and it’s been reached a lot quicker than we expected because of good uptake,” says Mr Lewis.

Since its introduction in 2009 SmartGate has become increasingly popular with over 67 percent of eligible New Zealanders now using it.

“Each week we are seeing more than 60,000 people use SmartGate when arriving or departing New Zealand”, says Mr Lewis. “SmartGate helps Customs officers achieve their high assurance, light touch approach, freeing them up to focus on the small number of people who are higher risk.”

Last month the age limit for SmartGate was lowered from 16 to 12, allowing families to use it instead of having to be cleared by a Customs officer. This step opens it up to approximately 192,000 more New Zealand, Australian, UK and, USA ePassport holders each year.

“We will continue to work on simplifying the passenger experience, expanding SmartGate to other nationalities, and working with Australia to create a similar border look and feel.”

Customs operates a total of 22 gates and 53 kiosks on arrivals and departures in Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch.

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