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Wednesday, September 29, 2021

New airport kiosks to help Qatar travelers with e-gate problems

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Biometric kiosk. Credit: QNA

Self-service machines that can scan Qatar residents’ eyes and fingerprints “in less than a minute” have been set up at Hamad International Airport, officials have announced.

These Ministry of Interior (MOI) kiosks will assist travelers who have had trouble using e-gate when trying to enter or leave Qatar.

They are available in both the arrivals and departures section of the airport, QNA reports.

Technicians will be also be on hand to help travelers register their biometric data, officials said.

E-gate woes

Before last month, expats needed to pre-register for the speedy automated e-gate service at the immigration department in Madinat Khalifa. This involved paying a fee and logging their biometric data.

But officials recently made e-gate free and available to all foreign residents over the age of 18 years old.

Egate service at HIA. Credit: MOI

At the end of last month, they said that anyone was welcome to use the service without signing up beforehand.

Travelers just needed to scan their passport or Qatar ID card (even if it didn’t have a microchip) at an e-gate counter.

However, over the past few weeks this has caused problems at HIA immigration, as some travelers were confused about how to use the automated service.

According to Gulf Times, Major Khalid Muhammed al-Mulla, head of the Airport Passports section, said e-gate works like this:

“A passenger has to place the ID card on the e-reader at the e-gate, which will read the biometric data stored on the card and verify them. The first glass barrier will open if he has got the leave notification (exit permit) as well.

At the next part of the e-gate, the machine will match the data obtained from the travel document and the scan of the eye and fingerprint. If the data matches, the device will open the final gate, enabling the passenger to move either to the boarding gate or baggage collection area (as the case may be).”

How is e-gate working for you? Thoughts?

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