American Travelers Granted Fast Queue Access at Heathrow Customs
As Brexit looms large, American and Canadian travelers are being granted a new special privilege upon entering the U.K.: official permission to jump the queue.
Australians, Japanese and New Zealand citizens also made a list of nationals who will now be able to use electronic passport gates at U.K. airports that were previously reserved for European citizens. The measure was announced Monday by Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond as part of the budget.
The move will cut down significantly on the time it will take travelers from the five countries to get through airport line ups. It’s part of the U.K.’s bid to open more broadly beyond Europe as it prepares to separate from the EU. Currently, travelers from the five countries are lumped in with people from around the world not part of the European Economic Area, and delays can be long. Recent wait times at Heathrow have been 2 hours.
These new measures are expected to begin in Summer 2019.