Non-European travellers have been required to fill out a landing card since 1971 and the government is now carrying out a plan originally announced in August 2017.
The Home Office estimates the paper system costs taxpayers about £3.6 million a year to process. Information gathered is mostly used for market research, with security checks carried out digitally.
The Home Office had originally intended to scrap landing cards for visitors from seven countries, but has decided to now include passengers arriving from all over the world.
Joss Croft, UKinbound chief executive, welcomed the decision. “Any government policy that helps to make arriving in the UK easier and more welcoming for international passengers can only benefit the tourism industry and the wider economy,” he said.
“With the possible changes that Brexit will bring, particularly to our borders, this decision signals that the UK remains open and eager to do business.”
The changes will free Border Force staff to carry out other roles and are expected to shorten queues at airports and ports.
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