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Old 13th Apr 2012, 15:34   #21 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
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Much as I dislike the Israelis, I have enormous respect for the way they do things, and I'd get Mossad to do it. It would be done with surgical precision and not the least worry about upsetting people on grounds of political incorrectness.
TV - maybe, but isn't the purpose of Mossad to stop the "undesirables" from getting on the a/c in the first place? Too late by the time you get to immigration, surely? I understand the Dutch also have a no nonsense attitude to immigration.
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Old 14th Apr 2012, 02:51   #22 (permalink)

Eight Gun Fighter
 
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They've turned off the fountains in Trafalgar Square, so I'm not going. (most fountains in this world re-cycle their water but apparently Thames Water prefers to bill)
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Old 15th Apr 2012, 20:49   #23 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Heathrow Airport 'may not cope during Olympics


How Sad, Too Bad, Never Mind.

I am actually hoping that a complete meltdown occurs and lasts for several weeks, as it will take something of this extreme magnitude to MAYBE make our Lords & Masters realise that supporting & encouraging a single mega-hub in the bottom right hand corner of the country while the rest is left to wither on the vine is a truly stupid idea.

Despite the dogma - every thing & every person DOES NOT have to transit London.
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Old 15th Apr 2012, 21:06   #24 (permalink)
 
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I would like to see that every time the EU queue exceeds 10 minutes, the Home Secretary and the top two levels of the Border Agency get a public flogging.

But I am a liberal......
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Old 15th Apr 2012, 21:44   #25 (permalink)
 
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Donkey - it is certainly a shame that there are not more commercial passenger flights from the UK regions. Were airlines to ask for slots at any of these airports, it is likely that they would be given a positive response. I imagine also that the people running route development at many of these airports would be only too happy to help set up new routes. I imagine that when, for example, Azerbaijan Air began talking to ABZ management, they were given strong encouragement.

The only thing missing from the current status quo is airlines who actively want to fly to/from the UK regions rather than London and sufficient passengers willing to pay enough in airfares to let said airlines make a profit.
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Old 15th Apr 2012, 23:53   #26 (permalink)
 
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Originally Posted by Donkey497 View Post

Despite the dogma - every thing & every person DOES NOT have to transit London.
Unfortunately it's still the same UKBA outside of London.

Waited over 1hr coming into MAN this weekend, and could write for that long on the systemic and mangement failings viewed from that queue. Nothing to do with job losses or funding cuts - both staff and expensive technology investement were clearly badly managed for coping with peak (holiday season) load.

The 1hr+ wait was in the native / EU queue of course, the Johnny Foreigner queue was observed at about 5 mins max.

You could easily conclude that UKBA's aim is to admit foreigners as easily as possible while making it so miserable for UK citizens to return that they don't bother, but I'd go with Hanlons razor against that. If UKBA ever invite you for a drink I wouldn't bother going, even if the venue is a brewery...
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Old 16th Apr 2012, 08:23   #27 (permalink)
 
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The UKBA staff are as hacked off as the travellers by it all. They brought back newly retired people over Easter and paid them more, despite the denials by UKBA manager on the radio.

What is so annoying is the denial by the politicians of any real problem and the refusal to bring to book those at the top level who are responsible.
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Old 16th Apr 2012, 08:25   #28 (permalink)
 
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Much as I dislike the Israelis, I have enormous respect for the way they do things, and I'd get Mossad to do it. It would be done with surgical precision and not the least worry about upsetting people on grounds of political incorrectness.
I hear they are none too fond of you either, Capetonian - sorry:Tableview. (I checked your file for you and both names came up.)
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Old 16th Apr 2012, 08:55   #29 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
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I hear they are none too fond of you either
I can't say I'm too worried. I have no plans to go there any time soon, or ever. It's around number 200 (out of 196) the list of countries I don't wish to visit.
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Old 16th Apr 2012, 09:09   #30 (permalink)
 
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Of course they could revert to splitting the EU queue back into two as it used to be - one for us Brits and one for the rest of the EU. And revert to a quick visual check of a Brit's passport, rather than the time consuming scan into the machine process. After all they have access to the passenger manifests and should be able to use their computers to identify anyone of interest. And if they still need to scan why not adopt the supermarket approach and place several scanners in the queue lines for us to do that job for them. Anyone the computer flags as of interest in each line would be flagged on their screen... It's basic system engineering really.

But I suspect the mighty EU would get upset at the unequal treatment of it's citizens (Shengen is of course a treaty so that's all right). And the politicos (who no doubt manage to avoid the pain of UKBA queues) wouldn't appreciate the possibility of a member of the press reporting success in passing through immigration on a grandma's passport.

But the British travelling public, and certainly those of us who travel often, but be delighted.
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Old 16th Apr 2012, 15:52   #31 (permalink)
 
Join Date: May 2009
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Haven't a clue. Do you really want to go into the 'others' line when you travel to the EU/EEA? As an 'other' national I would suggest that you don't.

infrequentflyer789 Why didn't you join the 'other's queue when it was down to 5 mins or so. My British wife has often joined me there when that queue was shorter, which is almost always the case at BRS.
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Old 16th Apr 2012, 16:16   #32 (permalink)
 
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ExXB Interesting point - you are predicting retaliation.

My travel is usually long haul. Most of my destinations offer premium passengers a "priority" service or, in the case of my most frequent destination, a frequent visitor card and finger print based clearance through electronic gates. Of course these are all destinations to the east of Europe...

My EU travel last year was Spain - PMI - where the non Shengan arrivals were dumped in a corridor and you couldn't work out which was "Others" until you got to the end of the (admittedly short) queue but it didn't matter as there were no jobsworths sending you back; and Finland where I had a pleasantly brief encounter with a facial recognition machine. Not enough experience, I'm afraid, to understand what it might be like to be an "Other".
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Old 16th Apr 2012, 17:44   #33 (permalink)
 
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Originally Posted by ExXB View Post
infrequentflyer789 Why didn't you join the 'other's queue when it was down to 5 mins or so. My British wife has often joined me there when that queue was shorter, which is almost always the case at BRS.
Admit it did cross my mind. You've got a legit reason travelling together, whereas I suspect we'd have been sent back by a jobsworth at the end of it (marshalling the queue being a more important role than processing people to prevent the queue in the first place).

I sometimes argue with the jobsworths but mostly at airports I sit back and take it, particularly when travelling with kids who may copy you later and may not appreciate the difference between arguing with immigration on the way back in and arguing with security on the way out.

[ perrennial cold-sweat question - do you explain to the kids why not to make jokes/comments about bombs in security line, in the knowledge that that may lead them to try it just to see if dad was right... or do you say nothing and hope they don't decide to try it unprompted ]
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Old 22nd Apr 2012, 16:11   #34 (permalink)
Paxing All Over The World
 
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Thought I'd add this link in here, rather than yet another thread:

BBC News - London 2012: Air traffic chief speaks of challenge
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Old 22nd Apr 2012, 17:12   #35 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by infrequentflyer789 View Post
Admit it did cross my mind. You've got a legit reason travelling together, whereas I suspect we'd have been sent back by a jobsworth at the end of it (marshalling the queue being a more important role than processing people to prevent the queue in the first place).
In CH the two queues are; EU/EEA/CH/diplomats and All passports. This implies than any of the first can go to the second. I honestly can't remember if there is equivalent signing at UK airports, or if says all 'other' passports. I'll have a closer look next time.

You perhaps could first of all apologise for being in the wrong queue and thank him/her profusely for allowing your transgression before they get a word in edgewise. And also promise never to post your experience on an aviation pilots forum.
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Old 22nd Apr 2012, 18:25   #36 (permalink)
 
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I wonder why only the immigration queues are being emphasised.

Does anywhere else have such constant inbound holding, and has done for the past 20 years or more ?

Does anywhere else regularly have nobody sent to turn on the stand guidance so inbounds have to wait blocking the taxyway ? This is a Heathrow specialty as nowhere else have I come across it.

Does anywhere else have to rip all the electrical wiring out of the ceilings in the terminal every few months and then leave it untouched for weeks ?

Did anywhere else ban hotel buses from the airport, replace them with a paid-for service offered as a concession to a contractor, and then let the buses consistently have long gaps in their operation because the timetable took no account of any of the constant daily traffic congestion ?

Does any other major airport have their management focused on nothing other than siphoning huge amounts of cash out of the system to send to HQ in Spain, to meet interest payments on the ridiculously excessive amount they borrowed to buy the place in a fit of megalomania ?

Does any other country have a Secretary of State for Transport, responsible for aviation, who comes across as an overpromoted school leaver intern who doesn't know one end of an aircraft from the other ?
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Old 22nd Apr 2012, 19:18   #37 (permalink)
 
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Have you ever noticed the number of staff just sitting around? Apparently waiting for their next task, but nevertheless just sitting there?

Have you ever noticed the convoluted path that you have to take from A to B and all of the expensive (and apparently no longer free of duty) shops on the way.

...
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Old 23rd Apr 2012, 15:56   #38 (permalink)
 
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As I have said before, BAA = Bloody Awful Airports
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Old 28th Apr 2012, 10:19   #39 (permalink)
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Of course, we don't have to wait for the Olympics to have problems at EGGL ...
BBC News - Questions over queues at Heathrow Airport

Quote:
Long queues at Heathrow Airport passport control on Friday evening have cleared overnight, BAA confirms.
Note 'cleared overnight' !!
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Old 28th Apr 2012, 10:49   #40 (permalink)
 
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I really don't understand why, whenever I enter an airport in the UK (BAA or not) they only ever have around half (or less) of the passport control desks open and ready. Why build so many and then not bother to use them? UKBA should be ashamed of the welcome they give to people in the UK. I know nowhere is perfect but I can't recall ever waiting more than around 30 minutes to enter any other country and that includes the USA.

Not used LHR to enter the UK for a while, but had waits of up to 45 minutes to one hour at LTN, EDI and LGW in the past year on numerous occasions. On one particular night, about a week before Christmas I remember landing at EDI from AMS and there being 2 immigration officers on duty.
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