Ridiculous immigration lines at BNE

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WLGFlyer

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Hi there,

apologies in advance for the rant - it has been a long day.

I arrived in BNE this morning at 7.25am on QF124 from AKL and then proceeded to spend close to 3h waiting in line at immigration. Within 75min there are 6 international flights arriving and I counted 3 staffed counters - one of which was reserved for the lucky few holding a e-passport from a certain group of countries. Throw in the wait at quarantine and the time it takes to walk, you are looking at over 3.5h from leaving the plane to leaving the airport. Upon commenting about it to an airport employee I was told to consider myself lucky, apparently wait times had been much longer on previous days (as evident by the unused queue dividers in the arrival area).

I find this unacceptable. Should the first impression of a visitor (potentially coming off one or more long haul flights) really be this? Thoughts? Similar experiences?

Cheers
 
D

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As a holder of an NZ or Aussie passport it shouldn't take that long if you use the smart gate.
That being said, I hardly expect that Brisbane airport were surprised at the flights turning up !! Let's face it, it's not a secret they are coming. !!

Your rant is understandable.
 

Himeno

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Sounds like it hasn't changed since late Nov 2013.
 

WLGFlyer

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As a holder of an NZ or Aussie passport it shouldn't take that long if you use the smart gate.
That being said, I hardly expect that Brisbane airport were surprised at the flights turning up !! Let's face it, it's not a secret they are coming. !!

Your rant is understandable.

Yep, my colleague traveling with a Kiwi Passport was out within 30min via smart gate.

As I mentioned, one of the few staffed counters was set up in a "fast track" mode, allowing certain passport holders (AU, NZ, PNG, Nauru (!) and a few select others) to bypass the huge queue. Even though I understand the system behind it, it still feels like a slap in the face when you have 6 smart gates + 1 counter for basically Australians and Kiwis vs. 2 counters for everyone else. Not fun when a packed Air China flight arrives 15mins ahead of you.
 

JohnK

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And I thought my 1h 5m from aircraft door to car park was poor this morning in SYD.

Seriously why does it consinstently take ~25m-30m for luggage to come out? Even longer if you have oversize.
 

WLGFlyer

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Yup, which is why I assume there are so few manned counters now. Doesnt help though if you are traveling on an overseas passport.
 

Archphoto

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A friend arrived from LAX yesterday, same problem - said even with the e-passport the queues were hopeless! Almost a carbon copy of what has been said upthread, although he also added, the bus to the domestic terminal had identical problem.

Obviously the ability to use one's brain when organising immigration staff rosters for regular flights, is way beyond the average persons intelligence quota. ;)
 

Himeno

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I thought most Aussies would use the smart gate these days?
I've only used it once, and that's only because I got a new passport early.
After Oct 26 this year, all regular valid Australian passports will be e-passports and in theory able to use smart gate. Doesn't mean they can.
 

Himeno

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Obviously the ability to use one's brain when organising immigration staff rosters for regular flights, is way beyond the average persons intelligence quota. ;)
Or they just can't use the staff they have in any useful way.
 
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jetlagger

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A friend arrived from LAX yesterday, same problem - said even with the e-passport the queues were hopeless! Almost a carbon copy of what has been said upthread, although he also added, the bus to the domestic terminal had identical problem.

Obviously the ability to use one's brain when organising immigration staff rosters for regular flights, is way beyond the average persons intelligence quota. ;)

In my recent observations I witnessed many of the Immi. & Quarantine staff relaxing at the arrivals coffee club during the peak periods. :shock:
 

DElliott

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Have passed through BNE International several times in the last 6 months - it is abysmal . Security staff yelling and shouting at passengers , short staffed immigration counters and security checkpoints. Have decided to bypass BNE and go via SYD or MEL for all future international flights (longer travelling time from CNS - but sooner do that than torture ourselves going via BNE)
 

trippin_the_rift

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I've been taking CX 157 a lot recently and find the airport is overstaffed for zero flights at 11pm. Perhaps bne could move the headcount to earlier shifts
 

drron

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As a holder of an NZ or Aussie passport it shouldn't take that long if you use the smart gate.
That being said, I hardly expect that Brisbane airport were surprised at the flights turning up !! Let's face it, it's not a secret they are coming. !!

Your rant is understandable.

I thought most Aussies would use the smart gate these days?

All very well but Smartgate is not infallible.Arrived back at BNE ~ 2 weeks ago and Smartgate wouldn't recognise my photo - I put it down to the halo from all the good karma I collected in Burma.
Fortunately we were the only plane arriving ~ 1030.
I have always thought that before Smartgate BNE was worse than LAX.
 

Mark3000

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WLGFlyer; said:
I arrived in BNE this morning at 7.25am on QF124 from AKL and then proceeded to spend close to 3h waiting in line at immigration.

I find this unacceptable. Should the first impression of a visitor (potentially coming off one or more long haul flights) really be this? Thoughts? Similar experiences?

Cheers

Yes that is appalling, makes Australia look like a poor third world country.
I had a similar experience in Queenstown NZ once and have never gone back

Poor form by our public servants letting us down
 

RooFlyer

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Whenever I see a long immigration line at a foreign entry point, my immediate conclusion is "This country treats its foreign visitors with contempt."

I gather in Brisbane at least, our government has the same attitude.

In all my travels over 30 years - from the most under-developed African nation, to the middle east, LHR & LAX at their worst, you name it, can I recall ever having spent longer than 90 minutes going through the foreign country's immigration and customs.

If you want to make a point about this, try to get onto the Union that covers immigration officers and tell them. When I got a long delay at MEL entry a couple of years ago (it was customs, not immigration), and got short shrift from the customs people when I complained, I got onto the unions who at the time were campaigning to have more officers on per shift. I was happy to give them more ammunition!
 
D

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All very well but Smartgate is not infallible.Arrived back at BNE ~ 2 weeks ago and Smartgate wouldn't recognise my photo - I put it down to the halo from all the good karma I collected in Burma.
Fortunately we were the only plane arriving ~ 1030.
I have always thought that before Smartgate BNE was worse than LAX.

I agree, BNE smart gate is haphazard and unreliable at best ( unless things have changed)
It's way better in AKL. I haven't been anywhere else lately to compare .
BNE is poorly run and there is an indifferent air about it all.
 
D

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Yes that is appalling, makes Australia look like a poor third world country.


As opposed to a wealthy third world country?

I've not flown international in or out of ZQN so can't comment.
 

opusman

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All very well but Smartgate is not infallible.Arrived back at BNE ~ 2 weeks ago and Smartgate wouldn't recognise my photo - I put it down to the halo from all the good karma I collected in Burma.

Never tried it in BNE but in MEL the "Smartgate failed" queue is usually a lot shorter than the "Never tried Smartgate at all" queue, so even if it doesn't work it can still speed things up.
 
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