As easy as ABC
Thanks to modern technology long queues at passport control in Palma Airport are a thing of the past. You may remember the social media storm last year as passengers had to queue for hours to show their passports on their way OUT of Mallorca.
The new rules which had been brought in to combat international crime and terrorism by a more thorough passport examination and the lack of adequate staffing by the national police who have responsibility for controlling the nation's frontiers were causing chaos.
Now, at a cost of €10.3 million to AENA the Spanish airports authority (photo), a new high technology solution to the problem has been installed. Called the ABC system, a computer scans your passport, checks your face against the passport photo and hooks up with numerous other computers from all over the world to check that you're not a wanted criminal, terrorist or some other threat!
This all sounds good, but the best bit is that the new system has cut down the waiting time at passport control down to 20 seconds when arriving and 15 seconds when departing. The 5 second difference is that controls are stricter for incoming passengers! With 40 machines in departures and 40 in arrivals which can check a passport every 12 seconds, our lives should be made so much easier. Let's hope it never breaks down!