View Full Version : Gatwick Premium Security and Passport. Worth it?

16th Dec 2017, 08:47
We are travelling GVA-LGW (overnight)-HKT-LGW (3 1/2 Hours) GVA with easy and Thomson/TUI. 1 EU and 1 non-EU Passport. Visa not required.

The Mrs, who is not a good traveller has ‘suggested’ that I book Premium Passport Control (£7 each) on the two incoming flights and Premium Security (£5) for the two outbound flights. Total £48.

For my own state of mind I’m tempted to do this particularly if there is a delay on the return. If the service actually works it could be worth it. But if it doesn’t I doubt we will get the money back.

Anyone used this recently. Travel dates not peak of peak 21/22 Dec and 6 Jan.

Also has anyone used Gatwick Connects. This would be very helpful on our return connection and no obvious cost.

16th Dec 2017, 11:18
What's the difference between Premium Security and normal security? Surely you still get personal fumbling your belongings!

16th Dec 2017, 13:18
I’m sure that’s the case but, apparently, the queues are shorter.

16th Dec 2017, 16:14
Might bhe a daft question but are you changing terminal at LGW? If not do you even need to clear security? If you are then I would say anything that makes it easier to get through is worth the money at Gatwick!

16th Dec 2017, 16:50
If you can have your hold luggage checked through for the full journey you shouldn't need to clear passports/security at all, and even if you are changing terminal there is an airside bus between the terminals. Otherwise the free GatwickConnects service looks like a good deal because they take your luggage off you at baggage reclaim on the inbound flight, print your boarding pass for the outbound flight and you get fast-track security as well.

Passport control at the North terminal can be a nightmare, especially if you land just after one of the Emirates A380 flights from Dubai. The South terminal is rather better. Equally you can just walk through EU passport control at both terminals if it's quiet and/or they have all the e-gates open.

16th Dec 2017, 17:28
Not possible to check bags through either way. We have to go landslide to get our bags. On way back we hope to use Gatwick Connects service, but we have to claim bags before we can do this, and that means clearing passport control and going to the baggage hall. I don't think you can get back airside from there.

As one of us has a non-EU Passport we can't both use the EU lines or e-gates. I’m trying to minimise slings and arrows. I just hope that I’m not wasting my money.

21st Dec 2017, 16:00
If 'premium' to you means having simply the 'luxury' of having a separate queue/channel for security then by all means go for it.

Used this once (luckily did not pay for it!) and was same length of queue as the others and nothing at all different. :=

22nd Dec 2017, 09:24
Your paying for (hopefully) a guaranteed short queue. Not a shorter queue.

Get your head around that and that it might or might not save you time it gets easier.

22nd Dec 2017, 15:31
I fly out of Gatwick once a month and get premium security (used to be called fast track) on my Executive card. To answer the first part of your question, it varies. Sometimes I go through straight to the conveyor belt and arch, sometimes there is a queue of 5-10 people and sometimes, belts and arches are closed so there is a longer wait. With the new security lanes at LGW, I think non-premium is quicker than it used to be. I don't think I would pay money to use the service. I would also stress that once you get to the belts and arch, the procedure is exactly the same - it is no quicker.
I'm not sure I understand what Premium Passport control is. When I arrive, I go to the face scan entry machines (as you will be able to if you have a microchip passport) and you're through. I've never waited longer than 30 secs.
Sorry if I haven't understood your question:O

23rd Dec 2017, 02:08
Might bhe a daft question but are you changing terminal at LGW? If not do you even need to clear security? If you are then I would say anything that makes it easier to get through is worth the money at Gatwick!

EasyJet and TUI are both at the North Terminal.

There is no interline with EZY and TUI so it's passport control, baggage reclaim, through customs then check in for the TUI flight and through security into departures then to the gate.

I used LGW on one occasion this year where the queue for the main security was getting busy and they directed several passengers including myself to the Premium Security which was just as busy as the other one and this was around 09.00 am so you can't always tell although personally for peace of mind especially considering that your wife has concerns I would go for the Premium Security at least for your outbound flight to HKT if you feel that the connection time is a bit tight.

Although I'm not sure what you mean by Premium Passport Control on your inbound flights into LGW as I have not come across that before!

23rd Dec 2017, 09:05
OK, thanks for he comments.

Arrived at LGW Thu night around 1815. Followed sign to Premium Passport Control (at N. Terminal at far left) Greeted by a young gentlemen who read our printed receipts (no sign of barcode) and checked our names off a list. He then took us to the front and after a 2 minute wait we were shown to an officer. Couple of questions and my (3rd country) passport stamped and that was that. EU queue wasn’t terribly long but non-EU had 25 or so pax, and one officer to deal with them.

Following morning four of us went to TUI bag drop, which was confusing, Then approached young lady at Security and asked about Premium, not well signed posted. Got escorted to a short queue and was through in about 10 Minutes. Two of us had bags diverted to hand check, but lady there didn’t know why, and just told us to go ahead.

TUI flight out delayed over an hour due to problem with pitot tube. Arrived in rainstorm.

23rd Dec 2017, 09:55
OK, thanks for the comments.

Arrived at LGW Thu night around 1815.

You were very lucky that the A380 from Dubai with 500 passengers on it was late, rather than early! Good luck for the return flights.

11th Jan 2018, 14:46
OK back home now.

Premium Passport Control worked just as well as on the outbound. But the other queues were not that long. But for £7 it reduced stress levels considerably to get through without a delay.

Gatwick Connects was a pleasant surprise. Took our bags to their counter in the baggage hall and were assisted by a lovely lady who helped us with the self-service baggage machine. However, due to customs rules, she couldn't take the bags immediately we had to take them ourselves to the exit doors. Just inside she took the bags there and loaded it onto a scanning machine and (I assume) it went into T1 baggage System. Connection was to EZY and the bags arrived in GVA as expected. What a relief not to schlep our bags through the terminal to the easy bag drop.

Premium Security was again quite efficient, but without long queues at other security it's difficult to say if it was worth it or not.

Flight was from gate 110 so was called almost 50 minutes before scheduled departure. We had 30 minutes in the shops, just enough for Mrs ExXB to get a couple of things. Flew on U2's first OE registered aircraft.