Exit checks

29 April 2015

On 8 April 2015 the government re-introduced exit checks on all outbound travellers at all airports and ports across the UK.

The checks will collect information that is included in the passports & travel documents of passengers leaving the UK on scheduled commercial international air, sea and rail routes.

The data collected will be provided to the Home Office to give them a comprehensive picture of those who enter the UK and leave when they are supposed to. The information will improve the ability to identify and further tighten the immigration routes and visas that are most vulnerable to abuse.

The majority of airlines already provide the Home Office with Advance Passenger Information (API). This is given to airlines by customers when booking their flights. For these passengers, nothing will change and they will not notice the new system in action.

Where API cannot be provided โ€“ for example on some rail and ferry journeys โ€“ carriers and ports will check travel documents and collect data by checking or scanning passports or national identity cards.

The checks will be carried out by staff working for the airline, rail or ferry operator. Every port is different and operators may conduct checks in different ways which best fit with their current embarkation processes, but data will be gathered on all passengers โ€“ this is the requirement the Home Office have set.

More information on how the exit checks will work can be found here.