International Travelers

International Arrivals

Tampa International Airport is your Gateway to the West Coast of Florida.  We’re committed to providing our international guests with a world-class travel experience.  If you are departing on an international flight, please arrive at the airport at least two hours before your departure to complete the check-in and screening process. 

International Arrivals: What to expect 

Baggage carts are provided free of charge for arriving passengers to use and transport their luggage on the shuttles to the Main Terminal.  

Meeting an arriving traveler? Processing times for international flights vary, and passengers may not arrive at the Main Terminal for an hour or longer after the flight lands. Guests meeting arriving passengers cannot wait in their vehicles at the baggage claim area until the passenger is ready for pick up.

You can meet an arriving guest in the Main Terminal by parking in the Short Term Parking Garage. Parking under one hour is free.

You can also wait for arriving guests in the Cell Phone Waiting Lot until the passenger has completed the international arrivals process and is ready for pick-up.

Automated Passport Control

Automated Passport Control (APC) Kiosks are available for passengers arriving at Tampa International Airport. At TPA, 80 percent of arriving passengers are eligible to use the kiosks, which make it quicker and easier to complete the U.S. Customs and Border Protection screening process.  

Arriving passengers using an Automated Passport Control kiosk must complete three simple steps:

  • Step 1: Declaration - Using the touch screen, guests answer a set of questions that pertain to the customs declarations form
  • Step 2: Document Validation - The guest’s passport is scanned and read for verification
  • Step 3: Identity Verification - The guest’s fingerprints are scanned and a photo is taken (U.S. and Canadian citizens bypass fingerprinting)

When the steps are completed, the guest receives a printed receipt to present to the Customs and Border Protection Officer for final validation.

Arriving U.S. and Canadian citizens and guests arriving from one of 38 visa waiver countries who have traveled to the U.S. at least once since 2008 are eligible to use the kiosks.

Visa Waiver Countries (alphabetical listing):

Andorra Hungary Norway
Australia Iceland Portugal
Austria Ireland San Marino
Belgium Italy Singapore
Brunei Japan Slovakia
Chile Latvia Slovenia
Czech Republic Liechtenstein South Korea
Denmark Lithuania Spain
Estonia Luxembourg Sweden
Finland Malta Switzerland
France Monaco Taiwan
Germany Netherlands United Kingdom
Greece New Zealand  


Mobile Passport Control

Watch the video or view this handy guide for more information on Mobile Passport Control. 


Duty Free Shopping

For travelers on their final stop before departing the United States, duty free shops are open for shopping two hours prior to flight departure. They are located in Airside E across from Gate 74 and in Airside F in front of the screening checkpoint.