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Immigration Update | Hong Kong

Posted: 12/10/2017              Author: Byron Lewis

12 October 2017

Smart Departure Available for 74 Nationalities in Hong Kong

From 9 October 2017, visitors holding qualifying smart, electronic passports from over 70 countries will be eligible to use “Smart Departure” lanes at Hong Kong International Airport. This will reduce the amount of time taken at immigration control on departure from Hong Kong.
 

Who will be affected?

Visitors aged 11 years or above, holding ICAO compliant electronic passports from the 74 countries below will be eligible to use the Smart Departure lanes, provided their passport meets certain requirements.

Albania

Denmark

Kazakhstan

New Zealand

Spain

Argentina

Estonia

Korea (Republic of)

Norway

St. Kitts – Nevis Anguilla

Australia

Finland

Latvia

People’s Republic of China

Sweden

Austria

France

Lebanon

Peru

Switzerland

Azerbaijan

Gabon

Liechtenstein

Philippines

Tajikistan

Belgium

Georgia

Lithuania

Poland

Thailand

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Germany

Luxembourg

Portugal

Togo

Brazil

Greece

Macao

Qatar

Turkey

Britain

Hungary

Macedonia

Romania

Ukraine

Bulgaria

Iceland

Malaysia

Russian Federation

United Arab Emirates

Canada

India

Maldives

Senegal

USA

Chile

Ireland (Republic of)

Malta

Serbia (Republic of)

Uruguay

Croatia

Israel

Moldova (Republic of)

Singapore

Vatican City

Cyprus (Republic of)

Italy

Monaco

Slovak Republic

Venezuela

Czech Republic

Japan

Netherlands

Slovenia

 


This list may be reviewed or amended periodically by the Hong Kong Immigration Department without notice.

 

Background:

  • The initiative by the Hong Kong Immigration Department is intended to provide greater convenience to visitors, while maintaining the integrity of immigration control. Facial recognition technology will compare a real-time photograph taken on arrival, with the passport photograph and biographical data stored on the passport and real-time imagery in the departure gate itself. Clearance is expected within 20 seconds.
  • Only passports that comply with International Civil Aviation Organization standards will be accepted for the Smart Departure scheme.
  • On arrival in Hong Kong, visitors will still be issued with a landing slip. Those visitors eligible to use the Smart Departure lanes will have the Smart Departure (“SD”), logo marked on their landing slip, with the statement “May use self-service departure”.

Impact:

  • Eligible visitors may use the Smart Departure gates to reduce the amount of time spent queuing to present their passport to an Immigration Officer.
  • If preferred, Smart Departure eligible visitors may still use a staffed departure lane and deal with an Immigration Officer.
  • This will not impact existing arrangements for those visitors already enrolled for e-Channel access, or for APEC Business Travel Card holders.
  • Hong Kong Identity Card holders are not impacted by this change.

 

Santa Fe Analysis:

  • This measure will provide additional choice to eligible visitors departing Hong Kong International Airport. Arrival arrangements are unchanged.

 

For further information or assistance please contact:

Byron Lewis
Regional Immigration Manager
Santa Fe Relocation
Hong Kong
D: +852 2586 6023
M: +852 9023 3109
E: byron.lewis@santaferelo.com

Soumeya Messadi
Head of Immigration Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa
Santa Fe Group
Singapore
D: +65 6398 3520
M: +65 9169 6061
E: soumeya.messadi@santaferelo.com