31st March 2023 – (Singapore) Singapore’s Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) issued a Facebook post on Friday morning, warning travellers of “intermittent slowness” in the immigration clearance system at all checkpoints. Half an hour later, the agency reported “system slowness” at selected passenger clearance checkpoints. These issues have caused delays for travellers, including passengers at Changi Airport.
Changi Airport, one of the world’s busiest airports, reported that the immigration system disruption affected the auto-lanes for departing and arriving passengers across the terminals. In response, the airport is assisting passengers and giving queue priority to those with imminent departures. Passengers are advised to approach ground staff if assistance is needed. Meanwhile, the airport staff also gave out bottled water and attempted to attend to people’s questions.
When local reporters arrived at Terminal 4 at around 1pm, an announcement was heard over the speakers, saying immigration clearance for all departing passengers had been delayed for technical reasons. Crowds at the departure hall appeared to have cleared, but the queues were instead seen at the immigration counters within the terminal’s automatic clearance area. Each queue at the baggage scanners had at least 20 passengers in line.
Real-time footage of the Tuas and Woodlands Checkpoint via the onemotoring website also showed long lines of traffic headed to the Causeway. This comes after the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) issued a warning earlier in the day, reporting “system slowness” at selected passenger clearance checkpoints.
ICA regrets the inconvenience caused to travellers and seeks their understanding and patience. Delays are expected, and travellers are advised to postpone all non-essential travel where applicable.
The immigration system glitch is not the first issue Singapore’s immigration system has faced in recent years. In 2019, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) faced criticism for long queues at the Tuas Checkpoint, which caused traffic congestion and delays for travellers.
Singapore’s Changi Airport and Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) have yet to release a statement on the cause of the system glitch or when it is expected to be resolved. However, passengers are advised to expect delays and approach ground staff if assistance is needed.