Australia announces permanent access to SmartGate channels for Taiwanese passport holders
In great news for Taiwanese travellers, Australia will now allow permanent access to SmartGate (electronic) entry channels at Australian airports for Taiwanese passport holders.
The announcement was made as one of the outcomes of annual Bilateral Economic Consultations (BEC) between Taiwan and Australia.
“SmartGate access makes entry to Australia much smoother” said a spokesperson for the Australian Office. “Given rising visitor numbers, the signing of a near-open skies air services agreement in December 2016, and increased direct flights to major Australian cities, SmartGate access is a logical next step.”
“With the Lunar New Year peak travel period looming, we encourage Taiwanese travellers to give SmartGate a try on arrival to Australia!”
Over the past two years, Taiwanese tourist numbers to Australia have risen nearly 50 per cent. Over 155 000 visas were issued to Taiwanese visitors to Australia in 2016-17. Australian tourist numbers to Taiwan are also climbing, facilitated by 90 day visa-free access arrangements.
Unlike many other systems, no pre-registration is necessary to use SmartGate. Eligible travellers can simply access the SmartGate kiosk on arrival at Australia’s major airports. Taiwanese e-Passport holders aged over 16 are now able to use the service on a permanent basis. Children aged 10-15 years can also use arrivals SmartGate if they meet certain criteria. For more information see: https://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Ente/Goin/Arrival/Smartgateor-ePassport
On departure, SmartGate can process all passengers, regardless of age or nationality.
Taiwanese passport-holders have been part of a Smartgate trial at Australian airports for the past two years. After passing technical standards, the trial period has now formally ended and Taiwanese passport holders can now permanently access the arrival SmartGate channels.