No security checks proposed for transit passengers in UAE

Pre-screened transit passengers will head straight to duty free

  
Image used for illustrative purposes. Two middle eastern business men arriving in Dubai, UAE for business purposes.

Image used for illustrative purposes. Two middle eastern business men arriving in Dubai, UAE for business purposes.

Getty Images/LeoPatrizi

A new proposal has been submitted to the UAE's General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) whereby transit passengers will be able to head straight to duty free shops and other outlets at the airport without going through any procedures, said a senior official on Tuesday.

Colonel Humooda Belsuwaida Alameri, assistant director-general for operations at the General Department of Airports Security, Dubai Police, said this service will only be for transit passengers as they will be pre-screened at their destination of origin and hence will have pre-clearance when they land at the UAE's airports.

He said most passengers are transit - around 70 to 75 per cent - and this new initiative "will give them time to enjoy the airport facilities, go for shopping at the duty free outlets and not be nervous because most passengers are nervous at the security point."

"We are waiting for the GCAA to regulate this initiative. If approved by the GCAA, transit passengers will not to go through security and will move straight from flight to duty free without going through any procedures.

"It takes some time for passengers for clearance at the security point and catching the other flight; so the time spent at the queue for security checks can be used at duty free or have a breakfast at the outlets inside the airport," he said.

Alameri was speaking on the second day of the Airport Show at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.

He elaborated that once approved by the GCAA, this initiative should be implemented across the country as it will improve revenue at the duty free as well as better help use human resources.

Alameri pointed out that this project will be applicable only for those transit passengers who are coming from countries where the standard of security is very high.

He revealed that this system will be implemented after auditing and being certified by the regulator and security agencies in the country.

"Dubai Police has plans to coordinate its human resources and capabilities to ensure security at airports. The airport security challenges are land side security, cyber security and security check points. Airports, the police and the security agencies need to collaborate and exchange information as well as do risk assessments to ensure security on all fronts," he added.

Earlier, Major General Mohammed Ahmed Al Marri, director-general, General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs - Dubai (GDRFA-D), said during the opening address at the forum that by 2030, smart gates at Dubai airports will replace passport officials with a view to reducing the human involvement factor in application of Dubai's 10X initiative.

"We have created smart gates in an exclusive and modern way and these now amount to about 122. We have created a number of smart projects in Dubai International airport, the latest of which is 'next-generation departure' project, which will enable passengers to complete their travel procedures in the least time possible," he added.

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