U.S. Customs and Border Protection Friday announced it expects a 300% increase in the number of international travelers moving through the Los Angeles International Airport this summer compared to last summer, as more people in the U.S. and abroad get vaccinated and are eager to travel again.
“CBP is proactively mitigating any potential impact in wait times by maximizing our available resources,” said Carlos C. Martel, CBP Director of Field Operations in Los Angeles. “In order to improve the traveler experience this summer, we are realigning personnel during the peak hours and will be constantly adjusting those resources based on passenger demand.”
Officials said they expect the number of international travelers at LAX to reach 18,000 people per day, a threefold increase from the 4,500 passengers per day during summer of 2020. To prepare for the increase, CBP will expedite passenger processing by maximizing the use of biometric technology.
“As travelers return to our airports this summer, they’ll find that LAX and U.S. Customs and Border Protection have integrated the very latest in touchless technology to create a safer, cleaner and more efficient experience,” said Justin Erbacci, Chief Executive Officer, Los Angeles World Airports. “Whether it’s the use of biometric identification or the fast and easy-to-use Mobile Passport app, passengers entering the country through LAX have many options to ensure a faster and smoother journey.”
CBP will also conduct public outreach to keep travelers informed about how to avoid unnecessary delays and work with its partners to make the passenger flow process more efficient.
“We are advising travelers to be prepared to experience high volume of passenger traffic and to avoid unnecessary delays,” said Cheryl M. Davies, CBP Acting Area Port Director Los Angeles International Airport. “Just downloading the CBP Mobile Passport Control App (MPC) on their smartphones would allow travelers to skip long lines by using MPC dedicated lanes.”
Along with wearing a protective face covering and remembering to bring all required travel documents, international travelers were urged to plan ahead for their trip by:
— using their smartphone’s Mobile Passport Control App to skip long lines;
— declaring all items being brought in from abroad;
— reviewing the list of items that are prohibited in the U.S., including ivory, tortoiseshell products and counterfeit items;
— reviewing the list of medications not permitted in the U.S.; and
— checking in online with the airline before departing for the airport.
More information and reminders about international travel are available at cbp.gov/travel.