Get ready to say goodbye to long lines at Canada Place.

If you’re embarking on an cruise to Alaska this year from Port Metro Vancouver’s Canada Place Cruise Terminal, you’ll notice some exciting new changes that have been made in order to make clearing U.S. Customs & Border Protection easier than ever before.

A total of 10 YVR-developed BorderXpress Automated Passport Control Kiosks have been added to Vancouver's Canada Place Cruise terminal in time for the busy 2015 cruise season. Photo courtesy of YVR.

A total of 10 YVR-developed BorderXpress Automated Passport Control Kiosks have been added to Vancouver’s Canada Place Cruise terminal in time for the busy 2015 cruise season. Photo courtesy of Port Metro Vancouver.

YVR's BorderXpress kiosks installed at Canada Place can be used by Canadian and U.S. passport holders, as well as U.S. Permanent Residents. On-screen languages include English, French and Spanish. Photo courtesy of Port Metro Vancouver.

YVR’s BorderXpress kiosks installed at Canada Place can be used by Canadian and U.S. passport holders, as well as U.S. Permanent Residents. On-screen languages include English, French and Spanish. Photo courtesy of Port Metro Vancouver.

A total of 10 new YVR BorderXpress Automated Passport Control (APC) kiosks were recently installed in the U.S. Customs staging area of Canada Place, just in time for the launch of the 2015 Alaska cruise season from Vancouver. This translates into fewer lines and shorter wait times thanks to the BorderXpress kiosks, which can process passengers up to four times faster than through traditional clearance methods.

“With this launch, Port Metro Vancouver’s cruise terminal has become the first worldwide to utilize automated passport control technology for U.S. bound passengers,” said Peter Xotta, Vice President of Planning and Operations with Port Metro Vancouver. “These kiosks will further enhance the cruise passenger experience at Canada Place.”

Watch plane traffic at YVR's Transborder (US) terminal come and go from the JetSide Bar. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

YVR’s Transborder (US) terminal, seen on a sunny summer day. YVR’s BorderXpress technology was originally designed to alleviate congestion and improve immigration wait times for travellers headed through U.S. Customs pre-clearance at YVR. Photo © 2013 Aaron Saunders

Developed by the Vancouver Airport Authority (YVR), the kiosks utilise the same technology that has been available to travellers headed out of YVR to the United States, and to Canadians re-entering Canada, for the past few years. The technology has proven to be so successful that YVR has sold over 600 of their APC kiosks to 22 different airports around the world, including Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson (ATL), Chicago-O’Hare (ORD), John F. Kennedy (JFK) T1 and T4; and San Francisco International (SFO), to name a few. Canadian airports equipped with the kiosks include YVR, Toronto-Pearson (YYZ) and Montreal-Pierre Elliot Trudeau (YUL).

“Our goal has always been to improve the travel experience,” said Craig Richmond, President & CEO, Vancouver Airport Authority. “By expanding our homegrown BorderXpress technology and introducing it at Port Metro Vancouver, YVR is continuing to innovate and make every travel experience, whether at an airport or a port, more efficient and hassle free.”

Currently, Canadian and U.S. passport holders, along with U.S. Permanent Residents, are eligible to use the BorderXpress APC kiosks.

Princess Cruises' Sapphire Princess glistens at the Eastern Berth at Canada Place in Vancouver, British Columbia. Photo © 2012 Aaron Saunders

Princess Cruises’ Sapphire Princess glistens at the Eastern Berth at Canada Place in Vancouver, British Columbia. Photo © 2012 Aaron Saunders

“U.S. Customs and Border Protection continues to assess and adjust its processes where appropriate and collaboratively work with the tourism industry. The recent evolution of APC for cruise ship passengers is just one more way that the agency is striving to ease the flow of passengers without sacrificing core mission requirements,” said Deputy Director, Kurry Pastilong, U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

As a Vancouverite, I’m a bit biased in thinking that Canada Place is the best cruise terminal in the world. In the past, embarkation could be a bit of a nightmare, particularly when the terminal’s three berths were in use. In the same way that the YVR-developed BorderXpress kiosks made travelling to the United States a breeze when they were first introduced a few years ago, I have no doubt they’ll dramatically improve the experience of embarking guests at Canada Place this summer!

New sails, glass, paint and surfacing: Vancouver's Canada Place sparkles in this view, taken last August aboard Holland America's Zuiderdam. Photo © 2012 Aaron Saunders

Bon Voyage! Photo © 2012 Aaron Saunders

More information on Canada Place, including the full 2015 Cruise Ship Schedule, can be found by clicking here. Additional information on YVR’s BorderXpress APC kiosks can be found here.

 

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