HOLIDAYMAKERS have faced travel chaos as UK airports’ e-gates shut down for two hours.
The passport gates stopped working last night, forcing passengers into long queues as they waited to enter the country.
Customers quickly took to social media to complain they’d been forced to wait for “hours”.
The chaos was caused by “routine maintenance across all airports”, according to a London Gatwick spokesman.
They added: “There was a planned national e-gate outage last night, operated by Border Force, for routine maintenance across all airports. We apologise to passengers for any inconvenience experienced.”
But passengers were left furious.
Ashraf Michael said: “Someone clever at Luton airport decided to close the e-gates subjecting hundreds of passengers to misery.”
Another customer, Geraldine, added: “I’ve been awake for 22 hours straight.”
She said she’d waited more than a hour to get through immigration at Luton.
Guy Dresser posted an image of the closed e-gates.
He wrote: “The grim humour of this in the 90-minute (so far… we are barely into the arrivals hall) queue at Gatwick Airport after a three hour EasyJet delay.”
Maddie described the queues as “standstill” and called the UK “an actual shambles”.
She added: “Said today that the only good thing about England is the airport efficiency, but even that’s not true. It’s 3am, there are fights and electric gates aren’t open. Standstill queues straight off the delayed flights. This country is an actual shambles.”
A spokesman for London Luton Airport added: “We are aware that some passengers may have experienced longer than usual wait times at immigration in the early hours of this morning whilst routine maintenance work took place on the e-gates which are operated by Border Force.
“The welfare of our passengers is always our number one priority and additional airport staff were on hand to provide assistance if required. We apologise for any impact this may have had to passenger journeys.”
Sun Online has contacted UK Border Force for comment.
It comes as a travel expert revealed the easy trick holidaymakers can use to avoid long queues at the airport.
And passengers have been warned not to show up to the airport too early for their flights.