(KFYI News) – Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport has added 12 self-service kiosks to the US Customs & Border Protection (CBP) passenger area to speed up the customs process for passengers arriving on international flights.
City and CBP officials showed off the new machines to the media on Friday. The kiosks allow arriving passengers to insert their passport in a scanner and electronically fill out the customs declaration that has previously been on paper and was handed out to passengers while still airborne.
After being processed at the kiosk, passengers will still have to speak to a CBP agent, but officials say that conversation should be brief rather than taking several minutes as it has in the past.
The kiosks will be available for use by US and Canadian citizens, although their use is expected to eventually be expanded to include all foreign arrivals.
Sky Harbor is one of 22 US and Canadian airports now using the machines, which were developed by airport officials in Vancouver, Canada. Assistant Phoenix aviation director Chad Makovsky says at the airports where they're already in use, there has been up to an 80 percent reduction in the customs processing time.
PHOTOS: The machines, which went online a week ago, are the first thing passengers come across after entering the customs area at Sky Harbor.