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Automated Passport Control kiosks launched @ TB Lettsome Airport

- Kiosk to expedite entry for returning VI citizens holding VI or UK passports
Deputy Premier Honourable Kye M. Rymer (R5) looks on as an incoming passenger uses one of the Automated Passport Control (APC) kiosks on Friday, August 19, 2022. Photo: GIS
The Immigration Department of the Virgin Islands (VI) on Friday, August 19, 2022, launched its Automated Passport Control (APC) kiosks to expedite entry for returning VI citizens holding [British] Virgin Islands or United Kingdom (UK) passports to the Territory. Photo: GIS
The Immigration Department of the Virgin Islands (VI) on Friday, August 19, 2022, launched its Automated Passport Control (APC) kiosks to expedite entry for returning VI citizens holding [British] Virgin Islands or United Kingdom (UK) passports to the Territory. Photo: GIS
BEEF ISLAND, VI- The Immigration Department of the Virgin Islands (VI) has launched Automated Passport Control (APC) kiosks to expedite entry for returning VI citizens holding [British] Virgin Islands or United Kingdom (UK) passports to the Territory.

The APC kiosks, launched via a brief ceremony at the Terrence B. Lettsome International Airport on Friday, August 19, 2022, will enable eligible travelers to scan their passports and respond to entry questions. The system performs a facial recognition verification of the travelers which allows them entry into the Territory if successful.

'We want to ensure a seamless process'- Hon Rymer

Deputy Premier Honourable Kye M. Rymer (R5), who was Acting Premier at the time of the launch, said, “We are working with e-Government to make these processes efficient, streamlined, and online…we want to ensure [entering the Virgin Islands] is a seamless process.”

Honourable Rymer also acknowledged the hard work of the Immigration Department, who “worked tirelessly” during the height of COVID-19, adding, “We look forward to the launch of the additional phases of the [border management system].”

Permanent Secretary in the Premier’s Office, Mrs Carolyn E. Stoutt Igwe, said the kiosks are a significant milestone, “as the Government seeks to enhance services to ensure the best possible experience for residents and visitors, as well as to improve the Territory’s border security.”

'We look forward to next tourist season'- Stoutt Igwe

The permanent secretary also said the launch of the kiosks is timely in preparing for the next tourist season, adding, “We are a tourism destination, and we are working hard to ensure that we improve our services, as we look forward to the next tourist season.”

Mrs Stoutt Igwe referred to the launch of the Immigration Department’s Border Management and e-Visa System on December 1, 2020. She explained that since then, the department has launched different services under the Border Management and eVisa System with Friday’s launching of the kiosks being another phase of the project.

What's next?

The Permanent Secretary said the system’s next phase entails the launch of the small vessel and aircraft portal which will allow pre-clearance for private/charter vessels, day trippers, and private/charter aircrafts. Additionally, the Entry and Debarkation (ED) cards online processing is underway.

“I hope everyone is as excited as I am and will pray for the Immigration Department as they continue to transform our experience at our borders,” Mrs Stoutt Igwe said.

The Permanent Secretary concluded her remarks by expressing gratitude to the Canadian Bank Note (CBN) Company officials for their “steadfast assistance” with the project, in addition to the Immigration Department’s team for their hard work in advancing the initiatives.

Kiosk use will eventually extend to other nationalities- Deputy CIO

Commenting on the new kiosks, Deputy Chief Immigration Officer, Mrs Nadia Demming-Hodge said, “This proven technology is widely used throughout the Caribbean region and internationally and is designed to reduce the wait time upon arrival while securely vetting the traveler.”

Mrs Demming-Hodge said that eligibility for the use of the kiosk will extend to other nationalities within a future phase of the project.

Director of Business Development of CBN, Fuencisla Leal-Santiago, thanked the Immigration Department and stakeholders present and said she looks forward to continuing the successful working relationship with the Government of the Virgin Islands.

11 Responses to “Automated Passport Control kiosks launched @ TB Lettsome Airport”

  • good news (24/08/2022, 17:31) Like (7) Dislike (1) Reply
    Hope it's tested and working well.. We don't have to be stuck in long lines.
  • Colonial Pig (24/08/2022, 19:23) Like (11) Dislike (0) Reply
    What about our schools?
  • great idea, but I got a question. (24/08/2022, 19:37) Like (14) Dislike (0) Reply

    When will there be an investigation into the immigration officer and how she uses her position for personal gain by forcing her husbands female employees to become strippers or risk being sent out of the territory. One would think that we would at least pretend to have some sense considering the territory present circumstances, but no it seems like its bussiness as usual. Are we working towards our freedom or are we working towards direct rule? Who are the individuals responsible for policing these violators of the law? whoever you are you need to be fired because you're not doing your job.

    • @ Got a question. (25/08/2022, 05:58) Like (3) Dislike (2) Reply
      We need that investigation. It's the women them in immigration corrupting the system from way back to now...
    • @Great idea (25/08/2022, 08:04) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
      A investigation into the Immigration department would be great, but who are we realy fooling, nothing ain't getting investigated. Look at who in the photo of this article just smiling like skittles and rainbows. It is a crying shame to see that we are so accepting of corruption.
  • late (24/08/2022, 19:46) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    we are far behind but good to k now we are moving a bit. Big deal I guess. Keep it maintained please
    • TO LATE (25/08/2022, 10:09) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      Maintening stuff around here seem to be a big problem. Voters card machine down for years now, people couldn't get a drivers licence for months, whole 1 acre of a school building waste away till it collapsing with children in it. To find something positive to say, at least the Pier Park bathrooms are well maintained. So that's something good.
      • Me (25/08/2022, 12:01) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
        Oh yes, the Pier Park bathrooms are the best Public bathrooms anywhere in the BVI. Kudos to whoever upkeeps them.
  • 666 (24/08/2022, 23:52) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    It’s beginning
    The beast system
    The cashless
    The lockdowns
    The controls
    The facial recognition
    The digital world order is here
    Who have eyes to see will see .....
  • vg boy (26/08/2022, 10:51) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    what about belonger status

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