Mobile Passport, The Best-Kept Secret at LAX, Can Help Travelers Save Time

06/26/2019 12:26 PM

June 26, 2019

Charles H. Pannunzio/LAWA
(424) 646-5260

Jaime Ruiz/CBP
(202) 534-8622

(Los Angeles, CA) As the busy summer travel season kicks into high gear, Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) are encouraging eligible international passengers to take advantage of one of LAX’s best-kept secrets – Mobile Passport.

The free and secure Mobile Passport Control (MPC) app allows arriving U.S. and Canadian citizens to skip the traditional paper forms and save significant time when entering the country at LAX. Passengers are already using the app in the customs areas at Tom Bradley International Terminal and Terminals 2, 4 and 7 to submit their passport and customs declaration information, but many more are eligible for the service.

“LAX has offered the Mobile Passport app since 2017, but only about 3.7 percent of arriving U.S. and Canadian citizens have used it to skip the longer lines at customs,” said Justin Erbacci, Chief Innovation and Commercial Strategy Officer, LAWA. “In many cases, the passengers who are using Mobile Passport at LAX wait only about one minute to see a customs officer. This is a largely untapped opportunity for people to speed up their entry to the U.S. and spend more time on vacation, taking care of business or being with family.”

Nationally, the average wait time for Mobile Passport users is 13 minutes, compared to nearly 29 minutes for traditional processing.

“The app streamlines the traveler inspection process and enables CBP officers to focus more on the inspection and less on administrative functions,” said Donald R. Kusser, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Port Director of Los Angeles International Airport. “The process is efficient and secure, the information and answers to inspection-related questions are submitted directly to CBP via secure encryption protocols.”

Much like the Automated Passport Control kiosks located in the four Federal Inspection Services areas at LAX, the app does not require pre-approval and is free to use for eligible travelers. As a result, app users will experience shorter waiting times, less congestion and faster processing.

After downloading the app, travelers create a profile with their passport information, including the traveler’s name, gender, date of birth and country of citizenship.

Upon returning to the United States, the traveler will complete the “New Trip” section, selecting their arrival airport and taking a self-photo. He or she will also answer a series of CBP inspection-related questions. Once the transaction is submitted, the traveler will receive an electronic receipt with an Encrypted Quick Response (QR) code.

Travelers then bring their passport and smartphone with the digital bar-code receipt to a CBP officer in a special line for MPC users to finalize their inspection for entry into the United States.

The MPC pilot launched in August 2014 for eligible traveler at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson Airport and has since expanded to 26 airports and three seaports. The MPC app can be downloaded through the App Store for iPhone and Google Play for Android.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection Los Angeles International Airport Port Director Donald R. Kusser, left, and Los Angeles World Airports Chief Innovation and Commercial Strategy Officer Justin Erbacci discuss the Mobile Passport Control app Wednesday morning.
To view a video demonstration of the Mobile Passport Control app, click here or on the image below.

About Los Angeles World Airports

LAX, the fourth-busiest airport in the world and second busiest in the United States, was named a top-10 U.S. airport by SKYTRAX. LAX served more than 87.5 million passengers in 2018 and offers an average of 700 daily nonstop flights to 109 cities in the U.S. and 1,281 weekly nonstop flights to 93 markets in 47 countries on 69 commercial airlines. LAX ranks 10th in the world in air cargo tonnage processed, with more than 2.4 million tons of air cargo. LAX handled 707,883 operations (landings and takeoffs) in 2018.

LAX generated 620,600 jobs in Southern California, with labor income of $37.3 billion and economic output (business revenues) of more than $126.6 billion, according to an economic study based on 2014 operations. This activity added $6.2 billion to local and state revenues and $8.7 billion in federal tax revenues. The study also reported that LAX’s ongoing capital improvement program creates an additional 121,640 annual jobs with labor income of $7.6 billion and economic output of $20.3 billion; $966 million in state and local taxes; and $1.6 billion in federal tax revenues.

LAX was honored as having the “Best Overall Customer Service Program” by Airports Council International-North America; named the “Best Airport for Breastfeeding Moms” by Mamava; selected for the Top 10 “Best of the U.S.’s Big Airports” (Wall Street Journal) and “Most Pet-Friendly Airports in the U.S. (Mental Floss); named the second-most improved airport in the U.S. by JD Power; received an “Innovation Award” from the L.A. Better Business Challenge for its Central Utility Plant; and named  a “Business Leader in Air Quality” by the South Coast Air Quality Management District. 

LAX is also the second-most popular airport in the world to appear on Instagram, according to LAX is part of a system of two Southern California airports – along with Van Nuys general aviation – that are owned and operated by Los Angeles World Airports, a proprietary department of the City of Los Angeles that receives no funding from the City’s general fund.   

About U.S. Customs and Border Protection

U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.

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