IRIS Registration is well worth it

Discussion in 'LHR/LGW/LCY/LTN/STN | London Area Airports' started by adl73x, Feb 7, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. adl73x
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    adl73x Gold Member

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    If, like me, you find yourself in the "Other" passport queues at London airports, they can be long and frustrating at the end of long journey.
    IRIS is available to some expatriates who are not UK/EU citizens, and can save a lot of time. Short queues or queue, and no landing card required.

    Initially registering can be awkward: not all London airport terminal have registration offices, and they are often not open at the advertised times due to "staff shortages". It is well worth persisting.
     
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  2. TRAVELSIG
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    Which expatriates are eligible for IRIS? Any idea or link?
     
  3. oscietra
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  4. TRAVELSIG
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  5. adl73x
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  6. stuartfla
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    I have never had to wait at immigration long with the priority slip in hand, if that were to change I might see more value in IRIS
     
  7. rwoman
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    IRIS is without a doubt one of the best things going for folks with non-EU passports!

    A note on IRIS Registration @ LHR T4 - for the past several months there has been a sign on the IRIS office (after security) to call a number that does not work. Also, it seems the IRIS machine at passport control is not open at all times - I'm usually able to use it for AM-noon arrivals, but it is not always an option in the afternoons when I come in...fortunately non-EU passport queues have been relatively short during these times!

    IRIS has always been open when I transit through T5. :)
     
  8. RichardInSF
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    I've seen more than one instance where the priority line was longer than the regular line.
     
  9. Valentine

    Valentine Silver Member

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    Fantastic tip! I'll be sure to register the next time I'm leaving from the UK.

    Alas, the enrolment at LHR T3 is closed till further notice. Any idea if we're allowed to cross terminals airside just to enrol?
     
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  10. adl73x
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    adl73x Gold Member

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    No, you can't cross terminals airside unless you have a connection in another terminal. I live in the UK and fly regularly, but it still took me six months to find myself in the same terminal as an open registration office. :( Once done, though, it has been brilliant.

    Many times the T3 office was closed due to understaffing. I think T5 is probably your best option. (Of course for that, you need to fly BA).
     
  11. dc3
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  12. rwoman
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    While the site says LHR T5 is open, it had a sign posted on the door to the effect of "Closed until further notice" a couple of weeks ago. :mad:
     
  13. adl73x
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    And the IRIS system at LHR T1 is broken and will not be fixed after last month's expiry of the maintenance contract. :(
     
  14. bassclef

    bassclef Active Member

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    I used IRIS at LHR T1 earlier this week, and it is a great way to beat the queues.
     
  15. FlyIce

    FlyIce Silver Member

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  16. adl73x
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    adl73x Gold Member

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    The UK Govt has committed to keep IRIS open until after the 2012 Olympics. In practice the lanes are closed most of the time for no reason available to the travelling public.

    The reality is that the IRIS lanes are truly automated - whereas the eGates (for EU Citizens only) are currently employing 1 UKBA person each lane and a supervisor for each group.

    The queues at LHR terminals in the last couple of weeks have been up to 5 hours long for non-EU citizens. All while the IRIS gates are closed to "protect jobs". Something even the twenty unmanned regular immigration desks could not do.

    If you value not loitering in endless queues at the end of long haul to home of the Air Passenger Duty, please stand up and lend your support to the UK govt e-Petition.

    http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/29857

    Thank you.
     

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