Advanced Passenger Information System (APIS) Program   

The Advance Passenger Information System (APIS) is a widely used electronic data interchange system that allows carriers to transmit traveler data to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and most other countries as required by law. APIS data includes passenger information that would be found on the face of a passport, such as full name, gender, and country of passport issuance. The current APIS requirements were established in April, 2005, with the publication of the APIS Final Rule. The APIS program is recognized by commercial carriers and the international community as the standard for passenger processing and enhanced security in the commercial air and vessel environment.

Please note: Storing SkyMiles Member Passport Information

SkyMiles members can store their Passport information for future use by logging into their MyDelta/ Profile. In addition, the Known number used to request TSA Pre√® consideration can also be stored in the member’s profile.

During check-in, the passport can be swiped at a kiosk or a photo taken of the passport MRZ (machine readable zone) and the customer can elect to store the passport as ‘validated’ for future trips.   

Countries Requiring APIS Information

When travelling to or from certain countries, passengers are required to provide advance passenger information (APIS) when they check in or they will be unable to fly. Aircraft operators are regulated to transmit the APIS with passport details to most countries. Future discussions include the benefits of self-provided passport data at the time of ticketing which would precede the validation at the time of check-in.

The required information consists of:

  • Full name (last name, first name, middle name if applicable)
  • Gender
  • Date of birth
  • Nationality
  • Country of residence
  • Travel document type (normally passport)
  • Travel document number (expiry date and country of issue for passport)
  • [For travelers to the US] Address of the first night spent in the US (not required for US nationals, legal permanent residents, or alien residents of the US entering the US)

What are APIS Requirements?

APIS requires 20 APIS fields to be transmitted to Customs and/or Immigration. Of these 20 fields, 18 are extractable from the Passenger Name Record (PNR) or via a passport/document swipe.

All required fields will be entered by passport swipe with the exception of 2 fields. The fields requiring manual entry are (1) address in the U.S. and (2) country of residence.

In order to comply with U.S. regulations and to minimize customer delays, travel agents are asked to input the country of residence using the SSRDOCS and where required, a U.S. address for customers when booking the reservation using the SSRDOCA.

Known Number Collection and TSA Pre√

Although the Known Number or Redress Number are optional, this is information that may also be added as Secure Flight Passenger Data (SFPD) at the time of ticketing, or the intent to ticket.

  • Known Traveler Number (Optional)

    • Used to identify passenger's eligibility for expedited screening as part of the TSA Pre√ program.
    • Known Traveler Number includes Global Entry, SENTRI, NEXUS or TSA application numbers.
    • See Trusted Traveler Programs for more information.
  • Redress Number (Optional)
    • The redress number is provided by the U.S. government to uniquely identify passengers who have experienced issues with misidentification, and are continuously referred to additional screening at airports. 
Which data fields will be captured by the swipe of a passport and which fields will require manual entry?

All required fields will be entered by passport/document swipe with the exception of 2 fields. The fields requiring manual entry are (1) country of residence and (2) address in the U.S. (when applicable). 

APIS Frequently Asked Questions

What is advanced passenger information system (APIS)?

Which airlines are impacted by APIS?

For which passengers is API+ data required to be collected?

What APIS data is being collected and transmitted to U.S. Customers and Border Protection (CBP) and other Government Customs and Immigration agencies?

Which data fields will be captured by the swipe of a passport and which fields will require manual entry?

What will agencies need to do?


How will the data be entered?

How can the customer Known Number for TSA Pre√ consideraion be provided to the aircraft operator?

What is the deadline as to when data must be collected and transmitted to U.S. Customs?


Which location should be entered as the U.S. address?


What information will be required for an address?


Since there are many chain hotels in the U.S., will city and state suffice as an address?


Is the zip code a required field?

Must all hotel names be specified if a passenger will be staying at multiple destinations in the U.S, or does the hotel information for the first point of the stay serve the purpose?


Under the home stay program, passengers in the same PNR stay at different locations. Will it be permissible to provide the school name as the address in the U.S. since each passenger’s stay is different?
 
We currently enter land operator or local agency branch office into the PNR as the local contact for the entire group, especially at leisure destination such as HNL. Do we need to modify this procedure?

Is it required to provide information for everyone if a group in the same PNR stays at the same hotel?

Some air-only ticketed passengers arrange their accommodation upon arrival. What address information is expected to be entered?

Foreign students sometimes arrive in the U.S. in advance of the start of school. In this case, they may stay temporarily with friends, family, or in a hotel. Which address should be used?

Which address is acceptable for those passengers who are joining a cruise ship, picking up a rental car, or do not know their destination address?

If a passenger changes a U.S. address after the initial APIS entry, how can the data be changed?
APIS data can be updated at anytime prior to the flight check-in within a PNR.


Will it be required to put local contact information into the FONE field in a PNR once APIS entry is entered?

Is Address data required for transit passengers?

Is an APIS entry still required when a passenger is connecting to Canada, Mexico, or South America, after clearing US immigration?


If a transiting passenger holds a separate ticket beyond the U.S., does the initial PNR have to inform of the separate ticket?


If APIS information is not entered, is there any possibility of a flight delay, denied boarding, or denied entry?
 

Is APIS information linked to US and other Government immigration database systematically?


How will DL know if APIS data has not been completed for all passengers?

 
If a passenger has dual citizenship, which document should be captured by APIS?

How do we handle diplomats who are particularly sensitive and typically don’t disclose address information to a travel agency?


How do we handle refugees (IOM: Intl Organization for Migration) who travel with temporary documents and don’t have passports?


What is Advanced Passenger Information System (APIS)?

The Advance Passenger Information System or APIS is an electronic data interchange system established by each governments Customs and Immigration divisions.


Which airlines are impacted by APIS?

All aircraft operators must comply.


For which passengers is APIS data required to be collected?

APIS data must be collected for all passengers traveling to the U.S., Guam, Puerto Rico, or U.S. Virgin Islands as well as any other country as required by law.  For passengers traveling to the U.S. an address for the first night’s stay is also required. U.S. Citizens, Legal Permanent Residents, and transit passengers are exempt from the U.S address requirement.


What APIS data is being collected and transmitted to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and other Government Customs and Immigration agencies?

APIS requires 20 APIS fields to be transmitted to Customs/immigration. Of these 20 fields, 18 are extractable from the PNR or via a passport/document swipe. 


Which data fields will be captured by the swipe of a passport and which fields will require manual entry?

All required fields will be entered by passport/document swipe with the exception of 2 fields. The fields requiring manual entry are (1) country of residence and (2) address in the U.S. (when applicable). 


What will agencies need to do?

In order to comply with U.S. regulations and to minimize customer delays, travel agents are asked to input the country of residence using the SSRDOCS and where required, a U.S. address for customers when booking the reservation using the SSRDOCA.


How will the data be entered?

Please contact your GDS or CRS provider to obtain the appropriate format for entering the data. Delta.com and SSD check-in have been modified to accommodate the manual entries.

The manual SSR entries are as follows:

DOCS - Passenger Passport/Travel Document information
DOCO - Passenger Visa Information
DOCA - Passenger Residence and/or Destination Address Information

DOCS:

EXAMPLE/PATTYMRS

DL0012J20NOV ATLLHR HK1

SSR DOCS DL HK1/////10FEB60/F//EXAMPLE/PATRICIA- EXAMPLE/PATTYMRS


DOCO:

SSRDOCODLHK1/K/ADA/JOE/989999999 (Example of CBP Global Entry paid program which includes TSA Pre√ eligibility)

SSRDOCODLHK1/K/ADA/JOE/TT11XXXX9 (Example of TSA Pre√ paid program)

SSRDOCODLHK1/R/ADA/JOE/9999999 (Example of TSA redress number)

Known Traveler number – 25 alphanumeric; currently 9-10 characters

Redress number –13 alphanumeric; currently 6-8 characters

Please note: Development is expected in 2018, to expand the gender field choices.

DOCA:

SSRDOCADLHK1/ADDRTYPE/COUNTRY/STREET/CITY/STATE/ZIP-

ADDRTYPE - D=DESTINATION R=RESIDENCE

Example
COUNTRY OF RESIDENCE: SSRDOCADLHK1/R/USA
US DESTINATION ADDRESS: SSRDOCADLHK1/D/USA/STREET/CITY/STATE/ZIP
WITHOUT ZIP CODE: SSRDOCADLHK1/D/USA/STREET/CITY/STATESSRDOCADLHK1/R/USA - SSRDOCADLHK1/D/USA/STREET/CITY/STATE/ZIP


How can the customer Known Number for TSA Pre√ consideration be provided to the aircraft operator?

The customer’s Known number can be stored in an agency or airline profile and is transmitted to the aircraft operator in the SSR DOCO.  


What is the deadline as to when data must be collected and transmitted to U.S. Customs?

All information must be transmitted in the same manner APIS data is transmitted today and should be collected as early in the process as possible, and during passenger check-in.


Which location should be entered as the U.S. address?

The first known address should be used.


What information will be required for an address?

Street address, city, state, zip code.


Since there are many chain hotels in the U.S., will city and state suffice as an address?

Yes, but a reasonable effort should be made to include a street address with a zip code. If a street address is not available, the hotel name along with the city, state and zip code should be used.


Is the zip code a required field?

 Yes, CBP expects a reasonable effort to ensure the zip code provided is valid.


Must all hotel names be specified if a passenger will be staying at multiple destinations in the U.S, or does the hotel information for the first point of the stay serve the purpose?

The address of the first hotel can be used.


Under the Home Stay Program, passengers in the same PNR stay at different locations. Will it be permissible to provide the school name as the address in the U.S. since each passenger’s stay is different?

Yes, provided an address is given with the city, state, and zip code. Otherwise, the first address should be used.


We currently enter land operator or local agency branch office into the PNR as the local contact for the entire group, especially at leisure destination such as HNL. Do we need to modify this procedure?

The address of the first hotel should be used.


Is it required to provide information for everyone if a group in the same PNR stays at the same hotel?

Yes, an address is required for each passenger regardless of whether all passengers are staying at the same or different hotels. In WSPN there may be a way to copy the first PNR address and country of residence to other passengers. More information will be provided as it becomes available.


Some air-only ticketed passengers arrange their accommodation upon arrival. What address information is expected to be entered?

Passengers should provide the best information possible. Carriers are expected to make a reasonable effort to ensure the information being transmitted is valid.


Foreign students sometimes arrive in the U.S. in advance of the start of school. In this case, they may stay temporarily with friends, family, or in a hotel. Which address should be used?

The first known address should be used.


Which address is acceptable for those passengers who are joining a cruise ship, picking up a rental car, or do not know their destination address?

For a cruise, “Transit to Cruise Line, Vessel Cruise Name AND U.S. City, State (of cruise embarkation)” or “Transit to Non-U.S. City, Non-U.S. Country AND Carrier/Vessel Name and Number” can be provided as valid destination address data. For passengers picking up a rental car or those not knowing their address, reasonable effort to collect and transmit address information is required. For example: Street Address: Touring the Grand Canyon, City: Grand Canyon, State: AZ, Zip code: 86023.


If a passenger changes a U.S. address after the initial APIS entry, how can the data be changed?

APIS data can be updated at anytime prior to the flight check-in within a PNR.


Will it be required to put local contact information into the FONE field in a PNR once APIS entry is entered?

Yes, a contact telephone number needs to be entered for each passenger.


Is Address data required for transit passengers?

No, it is not required for passengers connecting within 8 hours to a non-U.S. city. Transiting passengers whose final destination is not located in the U.S. with a transfer time of 8 hours or longer within the U.S. can enter “Transit to Non-US Country” instead of a U.S. address, along with the flight number of their connecting flight.


Is an APIS entry still required when a passenger is connecting to Canada, Mexico, or South America, after clearing US immigration?

Yes, various other countries require APIS data, including Canada, Mexico and several countries in South America.


If a transiting passenger holds a separate ticket beyond the U.S., does the initial PNR have to inform of the separate ticket?

No, we are only responsible for what we can see in the passenger record. The carrier is responsible for transmitting the required information based on its knowledge, obtained through reasonable effort, of the traveler’s itinerary.


If APIS information is not entered, is there any possibility of a flight delay, denied boarding, or denied entry?

No, but DL may be held liable and subsequently fined.


Is APIS information linked to US and other Government immigration database systematically?

Yes. APIS data will be transmitted automatically as regulated. 


How will DL know if APIS data has not been completed for all passengers?

An incomplete APIS list is already being used as part of the current APIS process.


If a passenger has dual citizenship, which document should be captured by APIS?

Passengers should provide the information from the passport they plan to use to enter the U.S. or other foreign country.


How do we handle diplomats who are particularly sensitive and typically don’t disclose address information to a travel agency?

If they refuse to provide an address, write “Refused or Unknown” in the address field. CBP expects carriers to make a reasonable effort to provide accurate address information.


How do we handle refugees (IOM: Intl Organization for Migration) who travel with temporary documents and don’t have passports?

The temporary documents will still provide the necessary APIS data. A first known U.S. address along with country of residence should be included.

 

24/07/18

 
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