Queues, queues and more queues

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions
a queue at gatwick South that extends way beyond the hand luggage check area

a queue at gatwick South that extends way beyond the hand luggage check area

In airports you would think that if the number of passengers increase, the number of people servicing them like baggage handlers, passport control checkers and security staff would rise proportionately.

Not in the USA.

Despite more people flying the Transport Security Administration (TSA) cut numbers and now is re-hiring. But not nearly as many as it needs says the travel industry.

Through their trade body, Airlines for America, American airlines have set up a website – iHateTheWait.com to encourage travellers to post images of long queues so that awareness is raised and elected representatives are persuaded that more staff are needed.

Are airlines in introducing a similar idea over here? It doesn’t look like it despite the fact that queues are growing at passport control and can be downright horrendous in peak times. But then here, (I can’t remember US rules) you are expressly forbidden for using telephones and cameras in the passport lounge areas on pain or death or something like that. So any photos taken would have to be done on the QT.

The EU line is often longer that the non-EU lines and the advantage we used to have of faster lines disappeared when the UK and EU lines were merged.

New systems have been tried at some airports to speed people the security checks as well but bottlenecks still occur and queues trying to get to the checking area let alone into it can occur.

In the many new apps being developed, some airlines (and train companies) are introducing instant messaging so that passengers can let them know of any problem little or small. It comes under the heading of good customer service.

But that only applies to ton individual organisations. What we need is an industry wide one. And a website called “I hatequeues too.co.uk” to remind our government that they have a role to play in getting us through airports quickly as well.


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