When I recently arrived in New York (JFK) from Europe there was a line at the immigration that looked 3-4 hours long. At the beginning of the line an agent had a look at my passport (I am a Russian citizen with B1/B2 visitor visa) and directed me to a machine where I scanned the passport and my fingerprints. After that, they directed me straight to a border officer and a few minutes later I was already on the AirTrain to Howard Beach.

This would be the end of the story were I less curious... but why? I can't think of any reason that would set me apart from everyone who went into the long line. It is not citizenship: I saw a lot of different passports in the long line, including Russian ones (and I'd expect that Russians face on average more scrutiny, not less).

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    You said you had a B1/B2 visa. Did the official also check that or did he only look at the outside of the passport? B1/B2 Visa holders can use APC kiosks as per cbp.gov/travel/us-citizens/apc – dunni May 3 '18 at 14:30
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    I'm not sure what your question is. Can B-visa holders use the kiosks? Obviously, yes, since you did. Why were you so fast? Because the officers found it easy to decide to admit you, for reasons we cannot know. What concrete, answerable question are you asking? – David Richerby May 3 '18 at 14:44
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    @DavidRicherby The thing I don't understand is why I was in the minority. The page on the CBP website posted by @ dunni suggests that pretty much all visitors are eligible to use APC kiosks and yet most people were stuck in the line – 0x60 May 3 '18 at 19:45
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    @user71659 I am female, 69 years old, with grey hair. I don't use my phone in immigration lines because they often ask you not to. Do you think an agent should assume I can't use a computer based on my appearance? – Patricia Shanahan May 4 '18 at 23:46
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    I hope the agents would have enough sense to point out that it would be much better to ask people, and direct those who indicate they are comfortable with computers to the kiosks. Appearance is a very silly way of estimating computer skill. – Patricia Shanahan May 5 '18 at 7:28

B1/B2 visa holders (along with D visa, VWP travelers, US citizens, US permanent residents, Canadian citizens) can use APC kiosks as documented on https://www.cbp.gov/travel/us-citizens/apc

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    This is also new. When the kiosks were first introduced, B1/B2 visa holders could not use them. – Michael Hampton May 3 '18 at 14:33
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    "APC kiosks can be utilized by U.S. citizens, U.S. legal permanent residents, Canadian citizens, travelers utilizing ESTA (Visa Waiver Program), and travelers entering with a B1/B2 or D visa." Doesn't that include almost everyone? Who were all the people in the line? Students and work immigrants? – 0x60 May 3 '18 at 15:02
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    AFAIK you can only use APC on your second visit, if you travel under the VWP (at least that was the case, when i travelled to the US the first time). – dunni May 3 '18 at 15:03
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    @dunni Not anymore at most Airports. In fact it varies from airport to airport, as not all have updated their kiosks to accomodate certain kinds of pax – Crazydre May 3 '18 at 20:57
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    The practices with the kiosks change every month (and by location), so also useful to note the date (and location) of any experience you post. – smci May 3 '18 at 22:22

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