UK Scraps Landing Cards for International Travellers

All landing cards for international passengers arriving in the UK are to be scrapped

Landing cards are currently filled in by passengers arriving by air or sea from outside the European Economic Area.

UK Border Force Director General Paul Lincoln, in a letter to staff, said it would ‘help meet the challenge of growing passenger numbers’.

Landing cards are used to record what is said to border staff on arrival, as well as the reason for travel and conditions of entry.

About 16 million are issued every year.

The Home Office had agreed to scrap them for seven countries, including the US and Australia, from June, but has now decided to go further, the BBC reports.

But unions have warned the move risked weakening immigration controls.

A document from officials to Border Force staff, seen by the BBC, says much of the data collected by paper landing cards will soon be available digitally.

It adds that the withdrawal of the cards will enable staff to ‘focus more on your interaction with passengers’

The letter to staff added: “These changes will enable frontline officers to focus their skills and time on border security issues and on cohorts who present the greatest risk of immigration abuse.”