By Peregrine

The government has announced an expansion to its Registered Traveller Service, which facilitates faster entry at the UK border.

Effective 5 October 2017, business travellers and frequent visitors from 15 additional countries are eligible to apply for membership of the service.

Which countries have been added?

The new countries covered by the service are Andorra, Bahamas, Botswana, Holy See (Vatican City), Macao, Maldives, Monaco, Namibia, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Seychelles, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Tonga and Trinidad & Tobago.

Eligibility

  • The Registered Traveller Service allows approved members, who have undergone advanced security checks, faster entry at the UK border through access to the ePassport gates (for ePassport holders) or the UK/EU passport lane.
  • To be eligible to apply, passengers must hold an eligible passport and have a visa or have visited the UK at least four times in the past two years.
  • The Registered Traveller Service had previously been open to adults only. However, last month, the service was expanded to include 0 to 17 year-old dependents of members, enabling families to travel together more easily.

Background

  • The Registered Traveller Service went live in April 2015 for applicants aged 18 and over, from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand and the United States.
  • The service was extended to include applicants from Hong Kong (Special Administrative Region only), Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan in January 2016.
  • In November 2016 the UK Prime Minister announced the future expansion of the service to certain categories of traveller from India.
  • From November 2016, the service was again expanded to passengers from Argentina, Belize, Brazil, Brunei, Chile, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Israel, Malaysia, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay and Uruguay.

Action Items

  • Nationals of the qualifying countries listed above should contact an immigration specialist to find out if they can benefit from the Registered Traveller Service.