February 16, 2015 -
The Department of Homeland Security announced it will install an additional 340 airport automated border control kiosks across the country which it says will reduce wait times for international arrivals by up to 30%, according to a report by USA Today.
The initiative is part of an overall effort by the Obama administration to boost international tourism to the United States by 200% over the next five years.
The administration is also expanding an existing program to allow certain travelers to pre-submit their passport data and customs declaration form via a mobile app before they reach customs inspection.
The program will expand from its initial use at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International to 20 additional airports by the end of 2016.
By furthering automating the customs declaration process, Customs and Border Patrol might be able to completely phase out paper customs forms within the next year or two.
Last week, the Homeland Security and Commerce departments released a report on the new border security measures in which it is focusing on the 17 largest international airports, which account for 75% of all international visitors.
U.S. Travel Association President Roger Dow said the security measures demonstrates that the Obama administration “grasps the broader value of attracting international travelers to the U.S.”