Travelers arriving at Calgary International Airport might’ve seen a few kiosk installation companies on site, working on installing the new inspection kiosks that have been recently rolled out in the airport.
The 80 new Primary Inspection Kiosks went live earlier in May 22, as a part of a new programmer that’s being implemented by the Canadian Border Services Agency. The government has been working with kiosk installation companies across the country to install the new kiosks in airports, with Calgary being the 10th recipient.
The new kiosks, which are expected to cut down on processing and wait times by about half, and will replace the previous automated border clearance kiosks in YYC that were installed as part of the work in installing the international terminal that opened in Autumn 2016. These kiosks were useful for Canadian citizens, permanent residents, and travellers with US citizenship, as it let them make their declarations digitally. As an improvement, the new kiosks will allow the same for pretty much all travellers, save for those without machine readable travel documents, as well as unaccompanied minors.
On top of allowing most travellers to make declarations digitally, the new system also removes the need for paper declaration cards that arriving passengers had to complete while they were on the plan. Now, they just have to get their travel documents scanned in one of the kiosks, answer some questions, then have their picture taken and make an on-screen declaration in order to verify their identity. Travellers can also use the eDeclaration App, free to download, in order to answer the questions ahead of time and save time.
Spokesperson Mylene Estrada-del Rosario stated in an email that the CBSA started rolling out the new Primary Inspection Kiosk system earlier in March 2017, and noted that the kiosks that were installed at the YYC when the new terminal opened in 2016 was the newest technology available during that time period.
She added that technology is always changing, and the CBSA is working hard to make sure the technology comes to the border in order to improve efficiency and help Canadians.
While the CBSA pays for the planning and development of the new system, the Calgary Airport Authority are the ones in charge of handling procurement, installation, monitoring, and, of course, maintaining the kiosks.