Reader Mike W. from Brooklyn, emailed yesterday that he noticed “tons” of automated passport control machines being set up inside the JFK T4 FIS/Customs hall upon arrival from Madrid on DL 127. The machines DO NOT require Global Entry but will initially only be available to US citizens.
Delta has confirmed their plans for the T4 automated passport machines to CNBC:
JFK is the busiest U.S. entry point for international travelers, and 40 automated passport kiosks have been purchased by Delta for use in Terminal 4, where it is the largest tenant among more than 30 airlines. At JFK, only U.S. citizens will initially be able to use the machines, but soon Canadian citizens should be able to use the machines as well. “We’re going to have a couple hundred people-100 today (Monday), 200 tomorrow (Tuesday)-test the system. If all goes well, we’ll go fully live on Wednesday,” Delta spokeswoman Leslie Scott said Monday. Delta would like the Custom and Border Protection agency to increase staffing and improve scheduling to accommodate peak arrival times. “But we don’t know how long that will take,” Scott said. “This is something proactive we can do now as an investment in the customer experience. Because if a passenger has enjoyed the in-flight meals, the lie-flat bed and other aspects of an international flight having to stand on line for hours on arrival really ruins the experience.”
The automated-passport system may reduce waiting times to clear customs by as much as 40 percent, Kevin McAleenan, acting deputy commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, said in an interview. The system is already in place at three U.S. and Canadian airports, McAleenan said. “The results have been very impressive,” McAleenan said. “It’s going to have a significant facilitation impact.”