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PARAFE - Know Before You Go

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What is PARAFE?

PARAFE is a French passport verification program which operates on a self-service basis. PARAFE is an abbreviation of the French “passage automatisé rapide aux frontières extérieures”, which translates into English as “automated fast-repack crossing at external borders”.

The PARAFE eGates are located at the immigration checkpoints in many airport departure and arrival halls, replacing manned immigration stations and instead requiring the user to self-operate the machine.

PARAFE works by using facial recognition, similar to that used by the American CLEAR security check points. It is available to users who have a chip in a biometric passport, meaning their facial recognition data is verified and cross-checked against the data stored in their passport.

One key benefit of using PARAFE is that it can really speed up the arrivals process. Typically, using the eGates are faster and take less time than using the traditional manned immigration and border control. Therefore, you will spend less time queuing and also at the border control.

How does PARAFE work?

1. You will first need to proceed to the automated gate when directed by the green light.

2. Scan your passport as directed by the machine, ensuring it is placed the right way up and on the correct page.

3. The computer inside the eGate will read the chip in your passport, and all the data that it contains. The gate will go green when it has correctly read your passport. Proceed into the doors and look at the camera.

3. The camera will then take a picture of you, which will verify if it is you based on biometric patterns of the image, compared to the data on the passport chip.

4. Once the computer has verified that you match your passport, the gate will open where you can proceed with your journey.

Who can use PARAFE?

To be able to use the PARAFE eGates, passengers must have a French, EU, EEA or Swiss passport that has been chipped. The passports must also be biometric, which you can identify by the logo on the front.

You must be at least 18 years old to be eligible for PARAFE.

You must be a national of one of the EUs 28 countries, or Switzerland, Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein.

Where can I use PARAFE?

The following locations currently have PARAFE eGates:

Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport, Paris Orly Airport, Marseille Provence Airport, Lyon–Saint-Exupéry Airport,Nice Airport, and Eurostar London St Pancras Terminal.

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