More auto-gates among ideas to combat Suvarnabhumi airport congestion

More auto-gates among ideas to combat Suvarnabhumi airport congestion

Travellers check flight information at Suvarnabhumi airport. (Bangkok Post photo)
Travellers check flight information at Suvarnabhumi airport. (Bangkok Post photo)

Installation of more automatic gates and redirecting travellers to less busy immigration zones are among the latest ideas to combat passenger congestion at Suvarnabhumi airport.

Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob said on Thursday that passenger flow at the country's main airport suffered from bottleneck problems.

"There are three zones for immigration and passport checks, but most travellers gather only in the one that is closest to the doorway after disembarking," he said.

Airports of Thailand would instruct airlines to direct their passengers to other zones, and clear signs would be installed leading to the different zones within the next month, Mr Saksayam said.

Suvarnabhumi airport director Sutheerawat Suwannawat said he would propose a 200-million-baht investment in eight more automatic gates for arrivals at the airport. Processing passengers through the gates would take only 20 seconds per traveller.

At present there were 16 auto-gates, eight each for arrivals and departures, he said. Two of the gates were for citizens of Singapore and Hong Kong.

Pol Maj Gen Pritthipong Prayoonsiri, head of Immigration Division 2, said there were 93 immigration lanes for arrivals and 62 for departure. During peak times, about 5,000 travellers per hour passed through in each direction.

Each traveller took about 15 minutes to go through immigration during normal hours, but up to 45 minutes during peak hours, he said.


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