Citizens of the US and Canada are among seven countries who can now use ePassport gates, giving easier and faster entry into the UK.
The expansion of the ePassport gate eligibility is set to significantly reduce lines and improve the flow of passengers as well as the overall experience at the UK border.
In line with the ePassport gate expansion, which was previously only available to nationals from the UK and the EU, eligible nationals will be exempt from the landing card requirement, providing a faster route through the border.
VisitBritain Director of The Americas Gavin Landry said:
“We aim to provide a world-class experience for the millions of American and Canadian visitors who travel to the UK every year, and we are thrilled this new process will allow travelers even more time to explore on the ground.
“The new eGate access for eligible travelers boosts our competitive tourism offer and our message of welcome, building on the growth we have seen and inspiring even more visitors from Canada and the US to book a trip to the UK right now.
With more direct airline routes and more daily flights from the US on offer, and with the UK offering great value and a fantastic summer of events lined up, it really is a great time to book a trip.”
The US is the UK’s most valuable inbound visitor market for tourism spend. VisitBritain is expecting 3.9 million visits from the US this year with visitors forecast to spend £3.8 billion. Forward flight bookings from the US to the UK are currently tracking ahead 8% for arrivals from May to July this year compared to the same period last year.