eGates open to Japanese travellers
Minister of Customs Jenny Salesa has welcomed the extension of eGate access for eligible Japanese ePassport holders when arriving and departing New Zealand.
The expansion of eGate access was highlighted by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe today in Tokyo.
“The majority of Japanese visitors to New Zealand each year will be able to use an eGate. This will make their Customs process faster and result in a better customer experience,” Jenny Salesa said.
“Increasing the nationalities that can use eGates helps Customs to process the growing number of travellers arriving and departing New Zealand, which in turn allows Customs to instead focus on high risk travellers.”
It is expected that within two years up to 75 percent of Japanese visitors could be using New Zealand’s eGates. Japanese ePassport holders must be 12 years of age or older to be eligible to use eGates.
Mr Hiroyasu Kobayashi, Ambassador of Japan to New Zealand, says, “As many as 100,000 people from Japan visit New Zealand every year for a variety of purposes such as travel, business and study. We enthusiastically welcome the expansion of eGate to include Japanese nationals as it will make their overall experience in New Zealand much more comfortable. We hope it will boost the number of Japanese visiting New Zealand and enhance the friendly relations between our two countries.”
eGates are an automated passport control system available at international airports in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown.
Currently, the citizens of New Zealand, Australia, United Kingdom, Canada, United States, China, France, Germany, Ireland, Netherlands and Singapore, who are aged 12 years or older, are able to use eGates.