+++ IMPORTANT HOLIDAY TRAVEL UPDATE IN THE MAIL ON SUNDAY: JULIAN BRAY AVIATION EXPERT ADVISES ++ ARRIVE AT YOUR AIRPORT CHECK IN AT LEAST THREE HOURS BEFORE FLIGHT DEPARTURE ++ BOTH ARRIVAL AND AT END OF HOLIDAY/ TRIP DEPARTURE TIME AS NEW EC DIRECTIVE (VALID FROM OCTOBER 2017, BUT ENACTED EARLY BY SOME AUTHORITIES) INVOLVES BIOMETRIC PASSPORT AND NEWLY INTRODUCED THUMBPRINT SCANNING, IS TAKING MUCH LONGER THAN EXPECTED AS TWO DIFFERENT PROCESSES INVOLVED AND SECURITY STAFF STILL IN LEARNING MODE +++
+++ TAKE SEVERAL EXTRA LITRES OF WATER AND STAY COVERED UP WHEREVER YOU GO ESPECIALLY WHEN DEPARTING EUROPEAN AIRPORTS AS DANGEROUS'LUCIFER' HEATWAVE STILL IN EXCESS OF 104 DEGREES (F) +++
+++ STAY OUT OF 'LUCIFER' SUN HEATWAVE BETWEEN 11AM TO 4PM ++ STAY HYDRATED AND USE EXTENSIVE SUNBLOCK +++
Thousands of British holidaymakers along with scheduled air passengers throughout Europe are facing many hours of extra-long security queues because of tougher EU border checks, time delays, and teething problems caused by a new biometric electronic scan system particularly the one introduced at Palma airport, which involves as part of the EU directive, the electronic scanning of a thumbprint, then a second rescan at another remote machine controlled entry point.
In Palma, the problem is exacerbated by security staff shortage and some of the entry points remaining closed. Although later reports suggest Palma has now temporarily 'solved the problem' by increasing passenger throughput at the gates. However some observers suggest this short term measure may be at the expense of tighter security.
The new EU protocol which specifically favours passport holders within the Schengen Agreement area, (the UK has not signed up to the Schengen Agreement). This new EU directive has caused widespread delays at many European airports, and flight connections missed.
The delays are also causing aircraft to lose their take off and landing slots, and disrupting automated and computerised baggage and scheduled cargo shipments.
Meanwhile back in the UK renewed computer problems on the British Airways network erupted again at 6am Wednesday 2nd August 2017.
Angry passengers immediately posted on Twitter and other social media sites. Some claim to have been waiting in line for two hours, many missed their onward connections.
A British Airways spokesperson however claimed the outage was only for an hour, and the system was back up and running at 08:45am ! The outage affected Heathrow, Gatwick and London City Airport.
But this latest BA computer glitch and the new rushed in EU Directive, means that passengers - both passport holders inside the Schengen agreement area and those with passports issued elsewhere - have all been equally disadvantaged, as flights from hub airports have missed connecting flights, or been forced to queue for up to four hours while leaving or arriving for their holiday.
Ironically European operated airlines such as Ryanair who mainly operate point to point services ( ie little or no connecting flights involved) can now offer a more robust time table.
Julian Bray Aviation expert comments: The problems are set to continue throughout the summer holiday season, delaying tourists travelling in and out of popular destination airports including Madrid, Palma de Mallorca, Lisbon, Lyon, Paris-Orly, Milan and Brussels.
The only option is for participating airports to greatly increase the number of trained staff and quickly fund and install the new electronic detection equipment as they are mandated to do by the EU Directive
JULIAN BRAY +44(0)1733 345581, Journalist & Broadcaster, Aviation Security & Airline Operations Analyst/expert, ... Travel & Holiday Guru www.aviationcomment.com, ... http://www.freelancedirectory.org/user.php?user=8121 ... www.freelancedirectory.org?name=Julian.Bray.aviation.comment, ... Aviation / Travel / Maritime & Cruise Industries, NUJ, EQUITY, LIVE ISDN LINK, Broadcast ISDN COOBE ++44 (0)1733 345020 ... SKYPE: JULIAN.BRAY.UK e&oe Old faithful NOKIA: 07944 217476