I travel for a living (it seems) and for the last two years I have been avoiding the US Connections area at Pearson airport like the plague. Why? To sum it up quickly, it’s been a mess! Small cramped facilities, confusing steps that were not well communicated, multiple procedures that triplicated tasks, insufficient capacity for Global Entry, and machines that were constantly broken or out of order.
Plus, mixing connecting and non connecting passengers meant the passenger loads were too high to process everyone in time to make flights. My last fight was delayed an hour simply because the system could not get everyone through security and customs on time. Not cool.
Today, that all changed.
The new procedures show excellent promise:
- Separate security for connecting passengers means less waiting at security.
- Security screening before customers means people are moving through the process with increased speed.
- Increased lanes and space for security means less stress for passengers.
- At customs, everyone uses a kiosk first; Global Entry or the new US customs machines. There are plenty of machines, all in working order.
- A comfortable lounge for passengers with baggage to sit and wait. Additional screens and seating were added and the instructions are well laid out.
- Dedicated and expedited lanes for Global Entry to leave customs means more passengers can be processed more quickly.
There is a bit more walking involved with the new process, (I logged about 1500 steps in the process) but this is a small price to pay for a system that finally works! And besides…it’s good to stretch your legs after a flight!
Bravo to the GTAA and their partners for making an improvement to the passenger experience that is worth coming back for. See you soon!