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Passengers warned of potential long delays at airports in Europe this summer

A new EU regulation introduced in March has led to tighter border control in European airports.

File photo
File photo
Image: Marius Dobilas via Shutterstock

PASSENGERS AROUND EUROPE are facing huge delays this summer because of a newly-tightened EU regulation on border checks, according to a number of airlines.

Thousands of flights in Europe recently had to be delayed because EU border controls are “significantly understaffed” to comply with tightened immigration checks, Airlines for Europe (A4E) has said.

A4E is a trade association of the European airlines created in January 2016, consisting of Ryanair, easyJet, Air France, Lufthansa, Norwegian, Icelandair, among others.

A new EU regulation was implemented in March of this year which outlines the reinforcement of checks against relevant databases at external borders.

A4E has said this has led to airports in Spain, France, Italy, Belgium and Portugal facing immigration queues of up to four hours, leading some passengers to miss their flights.

The association is urging member states to take action to reduce these delays.

“During this busy summer travel season, airline travellers have become victims of the disproportionate impact that the implementation of a new EU Regulation is having on the flow of traffic at European airports,” it said in a statement.

Managing director of A4E Thomas Reynaert said that member states should take necessary measures to prevent such disruptions and deploy appropriate staff and resources in sufficient numbers to carry out the requested checks.

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“Especially during the peak season, travellers face lines and can’t get on their flights,” Reynaert said.

At some airports, flight delays have increased by 300% compared to last year — member states must take the responsibility for this.

He said the association has raised the issue with the European Commission.

Have you experienced queues at airports? If so, let us know in the comments. 

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