Registered Travellers Scheme

October 11, 2013

The Home Office has recently announced that they have introduced a scheme called the Registered Traveller Scheme. The Scheme, which is now open for people to register, will be initially operated at Heathrow and Gatwick and will allow certain travellers from outside of the EEA to use an expedited channel at border control. The traveller will need to be travelling in to the UK as a visitor in order to use this priority route, and will also have to show that they have travelled to the UK 4 times in the prior 12 months. It is anticipated that users of this Scheme will benefit from faster queues at immigration control upon arrival and also that they will no longer be required to complete a landing card for entry. Registration on the Scheme is currently free of charge.

Applications for this Scheme need to be made online, and once enrolled, as mentioned above users will be able to use an expedited clearance process at the border. Entry will be processed at the border in a way that is similar to the clearance process for EEA nationals however Registered Travellers will still be processed under the Immigration Rules rather than the EEA regulations, and so will be granted leave to enter every time they arrive at the UK Border.

The nationalities that will be able to benefit from the scheme are –

–          United States

–          Canada

–          Japan

–          Australia

–          New Zealand

These nationalities are considered to be amongst the most frequent travellers to the UK from outside the EU and pose the lowest risk.  It is understood that the nationalities that can participate in the Scheme will be reviewed by the Home Office on a regular basis and presumably if it works well, other nationalities may be added to the Scheme in the future.

The Scheme will be piloted until April 2014, from which point afterwards it will operate on a permanent basis.

If you have any questions about The Scheme, please contact us for more information. .