Border checkpoint

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The Sultan Iskandar Building (Malaysia) and Woodlands Checkpoint (Singapore) on the Malaysia–Singapore border handles the busiest international land border crossing in the world, with 350,000 travellers daily. [1] [2]

A border checkpoint is a place, generally between two countries, where travelers or goods are inspected. Authorization often is required to enter a country through its borders. Access-controlled borders often have a limited number of checkpoints where they can be crossed without legal sanctions. Arrangements or treaties may be formed to allow or mandate less restrained crossings (e.g. the Schengen Agreement). Land border checkpoints (land ports of entry) can be contrasted with the customs and immigration facilities at seaports, international airports, and other ports of entry.

Contents

Checkpoints generally serve two purposes:

Checkpoints are usually staffed by a uniformed service (sometimes referred to as customs service or border patrol agents).

In some countries (e.g. China) there are border checkpoints for both those entering and those exiting the country, while in others (e.g. U.S. and Canada), there are border checkpoints only when entering the country. (There are also United States Border Patrol interior checkpoints.)

Definitions in European Union (Schengen) law

Italian-Swiss border post - since Switzerland joined the Schengen Area in 2009, this checkpoint is solely for customs formalities EU Swiss border post.jpg
Italian-Swiss border post - since Switzerland joined the Schengen Area in 2009, this checkpoint is solely for customs formalities

The Schengen Borders Code, which forms part of the law of the European Union, defines some terms as follows (particularities with respect to the EU are left out, in order to emphasize general usability of those definitions): [3]

These definitions mean that a place where a road crosses an internal Schengen border is legally not a "border crossing point".

Busiest checkpoints in the world

Land

This is a list of the busiest land border checkpoints in the world, handling more than 35 million travelers in both directions annually. These travelers (or individual crossings) comprise pedestrians, drivers and vehicle passengers. International border checkpoints are in green.

Notes:

RankBorder checkpointsAnnual TravelersReference
1 Gongbei Port Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Flag of Macau.svg Posto Fronteiriço das Portas do Cerco 134,000,000 [5] (2018).
2 Sultan Iskandar Building Flag of Malaysia.svg Flag of Singapore.svg Woodlands Checkpoint 127,750,000 [2] (2012). Based on reported daily average.
3 Luohu Port Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Flag of Hong Kong.svg Lo Wu Control Point 81,707,959 [6] (2017).
4 Puerto Fronterizo El Chaparral Flag of Mexico.svg Flag of the United States.svg San Ysidro Port of Entry 69,300,000 [7] (2018). See note. [8]
5 Futian Port Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Flag of Hong Kong.svg Lok Ma Chau Spur Line Control Point 59,464,480 [6] (2017).
6 Shenzhen Bay Port Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Flag of Hong Kong.svg Shenzhen Bay Control Point 45,118,797 [6] (2017).
7 Huanggang Port Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Flag of Hong Kong.svg Lok Ma Chau Control Point 37,059,848 [6] (2017).
8Puerto Fronterizo Mesa de Otay Flag of Mexico.svg Flag of the United States.svg Otay Mesa Port of Entry 35,400,000 [7] (2018). See note. [9]

Air

This is a list of the busiest airports in the world, by international passenger traffic, as of 2018. Airports serving international passengers are effectively checkpoints, and have the proper customs, immigration and quarantine facilities. Airports Council International's (January–December) preliminary figures are as follows. [10]

RankAirportAnnual Passengers
1 Dubai International Airport Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg 88,885,367
2 London Heathrow Airport Flag of the United Kingdom.svg 75,306,939
3 Hong Kong International Airport Flag of Hong Kong.svg 74,360,976
4 Amsterdam Airport Schiphol Flag of the Netherlands.svg 70,956,258
5 Seoul Incheon International Airport Flag of South Korea.svg 67,676,147
6 Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport Flag of France.svg 66,383,494
7 Singapore Changi Airport Flag of Singapore.svg 64,890,000
8 Frankfurt Airport Flag of Germany.svg 61,774,663
9 Suvarnabhumi Airport Flag of Thailand.svg 50,868,846
10 Atatürk International Airport Flag of Turkey.svg 48,978,770

Sea

This is a list of the busiest seaports in the world, with proper customs, immigration and quarantine facilities to be deemed as maritime checkpoints. Although figures simply represent total passenger traffic, most (if not, all) of the passengers served at these ports are bound for other countries and have to pass through checkpoint (i.e. the port is not a domestic one). This list only includes ports that handle more than 4 million passengers annually.

Note:

RankPortAnnual PassengersReference
1 Taipa Ferry Terminal Flag of Macau.svg 24,000,000 [11] (2017). Based on five-year total.
2 Hong Kong–Macau Ferry Terminal Flag of Hong Kong.svg 17,317,037 [6] (2017).
3 Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal Flag of Macau.svg 15,000,000 [12] (2013).
4 Port of Helsinki Flag of Finland.svg 12,300,000 [13] (2017).
5 Port of Dover Flag of the United Kingdom.svg 11,700,000 [14] (2017).
6 Hong Kong-China Ferry Terminal Flag of Hong Kong.svg 7,074,940 [6] (2017).
7 PortMiami Flag of the United States.svg 4,800,000 [15] (2017).
8 Port Canaveral Flag of the United States.svg 4,500,000 [16] (2016).

See also

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Port of entry

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International airport Airport with facilities for international travel (border control and customs)

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Huanggang Port Border crossing in Lok Ma Chau, Hong Kong

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Zhuhai Jinwan Airport Airport serving Zhuhai, Guangdong, China

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Passport stamp

A passport stamp is an inked impression in a passport typically made by rubber stamp upon entering or exiting a territory.

Schengen Area Area of 26 European states without mutual border controls

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Arrival card

An arrival card, also known as an incoming passenger card, landing card or disembarkation card, is a legal document used by immigration authorities of many countries to obtain information about incoming passenger not provided by the passenger's passport and to provide a record of a person's entry into the country. The card may also provide information on health and character requirements for non-citizens entering the country. Some countries require an arrival card for each incoming passenger, while others require one card per family unit, and some only require an arrival card for non-citizens only.

Directorate-General of Customs and Indirect Taxes

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Gongbei Port of Entry

The Gongbei Port is an immigration and customs checkpoint located in Zhuhai in mainland China, on its border with Macau. It is operated by the Bureau of Exit and Entry Administration of the Ministry of Public Security, and the General Administration of Customs.

Posto Fronteiriço das Portas do Cerco

The Posto Fronteiriço das Portas do Cerco is an immigration and customs checkpoint in the Portas do Cerco area in northern Macau, on its border with mainland China's Zhuhai.

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Neum Agreement

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Juxtaposed controls

Juxtaposed controls are a reciprocal arrangement between Belgium, France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom whereby border controls on certain cross-Channel routes take place before boarding the train or ferry, rather than upon arrival after disembarkation. With the exception of the Eurotunnel Shuttle route, customs checks remain unaffected by juxtaposed immigration controls and continue to take place upon arrival after disembarkation. Belgium, France and the Netherlands are all member states of the European Union and part of the border-free Schengen Area. The United Kingdom, on the other hand, has never participated in the Schengen Area, even when it was a member state of the European Union. As a result, juxtaposed controls aim to increase the convenience and efficiency of border checks when travelling by train or ferry between the Schengen Area and the UK by removing the need for immigration checks on arrival and by streamlining checks on departure. At the same time, juxtaposed controls are intended to detect and prevent illegal immigration. In 2016, there were over 56,000 instances when people were refused entry to the UK at the juxtaposed controls.

Automated border control system

Automated border control systems (ABC) or eGates are automated self-service barriers which use data stored in a chip in biometric passports along with a photo or fingerprint taken at the time of entering the eGates to verify the passport holder's identity. Travellers undergo biometric verification using facial or iris recognition, fingerprints, or a combination of modalities. After the identification process is complete and the passport holder's identity is verified, a physical barrier such as a gate or turnstile opens to permit passage. If the passport holder's identification is not verified or if the system malfunctions, then the gate or turnstile does not open and an immigration officer will meet the person. E-gates came about in the mid-2000s as an automated method of reading the then-newly ICAO mandated e-passports.

References

  1. "Clearing the Causeway". 2018-06-09. Retrieved 2019-02-07.
  2. 1 2 Lim, Yan Liang (2013-10-13). "A Look at Woodlands Checkpoint". The Straits Times. Retrieved 2019-06-13.
  3. "Regulation (EC) No 562/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 March 2006 establishing a Community Code on the rules governing the movement of persons across borders (Schengen Borders Code)". 2006-04-13. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
  4. El Paso Port of Entry consists of six separate border checkpoints along the Texas-Chihuahua border, according to the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts website, that handles 30,457,621 northbound individual crossings in 2018 as listed in a workbook by the USDOT, which works out to an estimated 60.9 million individual crossings in both directions. However, they are not under one immigration complex but rather checkpoints at the end of six separate bridges, and each checkpoint alone does not meet the minimum 35 million annual individual crossings to be on the list.
  5. "Macau | Gongbei Border crossings in 2018 highest ever in China - Zhuhai Gov't". Macau Business. 2019-01-03. Retrieved 2019-06-14.
  6. 1 2 3 4 5 6 "Immigration Department Annual Report 2017". www.immd.gov.hk. Retrieved 2019-06-14.
  7. 1 2 "Workbook: Border Crossing Annual Data". explore.dot.gov. Retrieved 2019-06-14.
  8. 34,671,379 northbound individual crossings were recorded in 2018, as listed in a workbook by the USDOT. As southbound border crossings counts are not formally produced and publicly available, it is estimated that a similar number of crossings occurs from San Diego to Tijuana, as has previously been done in a report by the SANDAG. Since this is an estimate, the resulting figure has been rounded off to the nearest 100,000.
  9. 17,714,750 northbound individual crossings were recorded in 2018, as listed in a workbook by the USDOT. As southbound border crossings counts are not formally produced and publicly available, it is estimated that a similar number of crossings occurs from San Diego to Tijuana, as has previously been done in a report by the SANDAG. Since this is an estimate, the resulting figure has been rounded off to the nearest 100,000.
  10. "ACI World releases preliminary 2018 world airport traffic rankings Passenger traffic: Passenger traffic remains resilient but cargo hubs see volume growth weaken India becomes world's third largest aviation market for passenger traffic". www.aci.aero. 2019-03-13. Retrieved 2019-04-10.
  11. "Taipa Ferry Terminal Now Operational". Macao Government Tourism Office. June 2017. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  12. "Govt to spend 80 million on upgrading Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal". Macau News. 25 July 2013. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
  13. Tekniikka&Talous (17 January 2018). "The Port of Helsinki takes the top spot among European passenger ports". Port of Helsinki . Retrieved 5 October 2019.
  14. "About/Performance". Port of Dover . Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  15. Forgione, Mary (25 July 2017). "World's busiest cruise ports are in Florida". latimes.com . Retrieved 16 June 2019.
  16. Barth, Cindy (16 November 2017). "Port Canaveral posts record cruise numbers for FY 2017". bizjournals.com . Retrieved 16 June 2019.