The Bahamas Customs & Excise Department’s new Exempt App launched this month to replace the C-17 form for people arriving in the in the country. Officials of the Customs Department gave an update and assessment of the performance of the app. Users of the new application have complained that it is not user friendly and about its accessibility. Awareness of the app was also an issue.
Acting Customs Comptroller Ralph Munroe said, “we made an attempt but the result really isn’t what we want. I think the public deserves something better.”
Customs IT Officer Nadia Williams said, “one realization since we have launched is that we need to bring more awareness to the app. Many are still not conscious that the app is in use and mandatory at this time. This has caused, at times, a delay in processing.”
Munroe says that he believe that the process can be simplified. “The steps are a bit too many and persons who are used to just the simple C-17 they know it like the back of their hand, they can write one or two things in there. Taking it into the phone for the app and to work on it there’s a push back. No doubt we’re gonna have to go back to the developers and have it redesigned. We’re going to have to shorten the process. It is scary and we apologize to those persons who have had the experience. Some have had a smooth experience, mind you, but generally I think persons have an aversion to it and I believe we can do a better job. But that’s gonna take a little time. And so it’s a work in progress,” he said.