EY to offer US pre-clearance at AUH

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JessicaTam

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I have just received the following email:

US Pre-clearance Now at Abu Dhabi airport
Dear JessicaTam,
Now all Etihad Airways guests flying to select destinations in the U.S.A will have access to Abu Dhabi International Airport’s United States Preclearance facility located at Terminal 3.

The new facility enables guests flying Etihad Airways to preclear the U.S. Customs and Border Protection formalities before boarding their flights in Abu Dhabi. Upon arrival in the U.S.A, guests will be treated as though they are domestic arrivals. Shorter connection times are possible for onward flights in the U.S., with your luggage arriving to the final destination.

As the first facility of its kind in the region, guests flying to select destinations in the U.S can now look forward to more of our award-winning hospitality, and worry less about long queues. Experience an easier, quicker and more comfortable journey with the World’s Leading Airline* to Washington DC, Chicago and New York. Future US destinations will also benefit from the facility.

For further information visit: www.etihad.com/uspreclearance.


 

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I also received this. It's a pity we don't have this facility in Australia. Anything to reduce those immigration queues
 

markis10

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It went live a few weeks ago, quite a stink kicked up over at FT given it was EY and in the gulf.
 

JessicaTam

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It went live a few weeks ago, quite a stink kicked up over at FT given it was EY and in the gulf.
[sarcasm]
Why, because it was going to let in all the terrorists? Or because it was not available to a 'western' country instead?
[/sarcasm]
 

serfty

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It went live a few weeks ago, quite a stink kicked up over at FT given it was EY and in the gulf.
Timing is good for those flying back to the USA after the Red Bull race.

I did notice on FT forum there were a few teething issues.
 

zainman

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I think that's the issue with it. Why is a foreign carrier given a competitive advantage using taxpayer dollars?


I believe that the facility is funded by the Abu Dhabi government. At least thats what numerous have explained on FT and airliners.
 

dairyfloss

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I also received this. It's a pity we don't have this facility in Australia. Anything to reduce those immigration queues

Absolutely! I'd almost consider SYD-xAUH-LAX just to avoid the inevitable LA line-up! :)
 

opusman

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The question is what is the access to lounges etc like once you have gone through pre-clearance.
 

serfty

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The question is what is the access to lounges etc like once you have gone through pre-clearance.
Zip - you need to depart the lounges with enough time to both pre-clear and for boarding to commence.

Services were leaving very late when the began this.
 

TomVexille

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I believe that the facility is funded by the Abu Dhabi government. At least thats what numerous have explained on FT and airliners.

Interesting. So Abu Dhabi is going to pay the wages of the US CBP employees?
 

RooFlyer

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I think that's the issue with it. Why is a foreign carrier given a competitive advantage using taxpayer dollars?

I don't think its you asking that question :), but the answer I believe (for pre-clearance in general) is that:

1) If there is a problem with an inbound passenger, they are bounced before they leave the departure airport, rather than being a problem for the US Government; and

2) Relieves some immigration congestion at US arrival ports.

Patriotic Americans shouldn't have an issue with it - its extending the boundaries of US Sovereignty! (One you go through US Pre clearance, you are on 'US soil' - er, 'US Carpet'. )

Once I had cleared US immigration at Calgary airport. We boarded, then the plane went tech, so we were offloaded back to the departure gate. US guard person sat down beside me and said that she hoped it wouldn't be long. I asked any special reason?

"More for you folks. After pre-clearance you have to depart within XX [I forget - 90?] minutes. After that you have to go back."
"Go back?"
"Yes, you have to re-enter Canada through their immigration, then pre-clear US Immigration again before you board."
"Gee, that would be a hassle" I replied.
"Yes" she said. "Especially considering this was the last flight out and all the immigration folks have gone home". :shock:

We got out OK.
 

koonyaflyer

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I used this 2 weeks ago on my way to NYC. In theory it is great concept, and I am sure will eventually be a huge plus. The challenge at the moment is that there are 3 flights to the US leaving within a 30 minute time span (10am to 10.30). I was in the first class lounge and they suggested we start to move to immigration an hour before departure.

the initial security screening for premium pax is quite slow, as they have to process all the flight crew for the three flights. At least at this point there is still a priority line for status pax. Once you get to immigration all status is forgotten, and it is open slather. That would have been fine, but they kept calling forward the pax for the earlier flight, which means we did not move for nearly 30 mins. Thus was compounded by the large number of transit pax from the sub continent.....for whom there seemed to be a lot of visa challenges. The front line processing staff would take theses pax to the interview rooms, at times reducing the front line processing staff down to 3, which for 3 full 777 flights was simply not enough. It was an hour from lounge to boarding!

We ended up taking off 1.5 hours after departure time, but made up a lot of time en-route. The arrival in NYC is fantastic though, 15 minutes gate to limo!

Ultimately I would do it again.....I think the concept is great, and the airline was nearly faultless!
 

TomVexille

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I don't think its you asking that question :), but the answer I believe (for pre-clearance in general) is that:

1) If there is a problem with an inbound passenger, they are bounced before they leave the departure airport, rather than being a problem for the US Government; and

2) Relieves some immigration congestion at US arrival ports.

Patriotic Americans shouldn't have an issue with it - its extending the boundaries of US Sovereignty! (One you go through US Pre clearance, you are on 'US soil' - er, 'US Carpet'. )

Once I had cleared US immigration at Calgary airport. We boarded, then the plane went tech, so we were offloaded back to the departure gate. US guard person sat down beside me and said that she hoped it wouldn't be long. I asked any special reason?

"More for you folks. After pre-clearance you have to depart within XX [I forget - 90?] minutes. After that you have to go back."
"Go back?"
"Yes, you have to re-enter Canada through their immigration, then pre-clear US Immigration again before you board."
"Gee, that would be a hassle" I replied.
"Yes" she said. "Especially considering this was the last flight out and all the immigration folks have gone home". :shock:

We got out OK.

As a patriotic American, it does feel good to have a foothold in the Middle East :D.

I get your points, the reduction of arrivals congestion is good for everyone. However, problems with inbound passengers is the airlines problem.
 

ReLoad

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What a fantastic idea! Imagine if we had that in SYD or MEl, given the timing of flights to the USA leaving all at similar times it would make a lot of sense! Imagine that I would actually love LAX! ;)

But I do feel for officer Martinez at LAX, who else would he growl at, at 6am without a bunch of bleary eyed Aussies crammed into whY for 15 hours coming past his cubicle of power.
 

erkpod

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What a fantastic idea! Imagine if we had that in SYD or MEl, given the timing of flights to the USA leaving all at similar times it would make a lot of sense! Imagine that I would actually love LAX! ;)

But I do feel for officer Martinez at LAX, who else would he growl at, at 6am without a bunch of bleary eyed Aussies crammed into whY for 15 hours coming past his cubicle of power.

We now let Americans use our Smart Gates so it would be nice if we could use their version in the US.
 

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What a fantastic idea! Imagine if we had that in SYD or MEl, given the timing of flights to the USA leaving all at similar times it would make a lot of sense! Imagine that I would actually love LAX! ;)

But I do feel for officer Martinez at LAX, who else would he growl at, at 6am without a bunch of bleary eyed Aussies crammed into whY for 15 hours coming past his cubicle of power.

With his bloody great cannon strapped to his waist so that if he doesn't like your passport photo he can shoot you instead
 

TomVexille

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What a fantastic idea! Imagine if we had that in SYD or MEl, given the timing of flights to the USA leaving all at similar times it would make a lot of sense! Imagine that I would actually love LAX! ;)

But I do feel for officer Martinez at LAX, who else would he growl at, at 6am without a bunch of bleary eyed Aussies crammed into whY for 15 hours coming past his cubicle of power.

I'm pretty sure that SYD and possibly MEL meet the minimum passenger requirements to qualify for pre-clearance. So it is possible to heave it here.
 
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