Global Entry Program

 

If you travel to international destinations more than a couple of times a year, you might want to consider the Global Entry Program. It’s a trusted traveller program that allows speedy passport checks and customs declaration. Upon arrival, you’re able to go straight to the Global Entry kiosks where your passport is read, fingerprint verification is taken, and customs declaration is printed out, all of which takes about 3 minutes. You completely skip the long lines for passport checks, which are usually half an hour or longer (as you might know), and proceed directly to the baggage claim and exit.

I applied/joined last year, as I travelled back and forth from the UK to the US several times, and I fully recommend it. You do have to go through a background check and interview*, which most likely takes an hour total, and it costs about $100 for the application fee, but that quickly becomes well worth the time and money. It’s been incredibly convenient to skip right past the long line for passport checks, and I’ve noticed lately that airports are increasing the amount of kiosks as more people apply (even so, with airports that have two or three kiosks instead of a dozen, I’ve never had anyone in front of me). Interested? Global Entry: How to apply. Also, to check and see if your home city has enrollment centers and kiosks, see the kiosk & terminal maps.

Global Entry is open to U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, Dutch citizens, and Mexican nationals.

*I would suggest at the interview you listen closely to the person interviewing you, and if you’re not sure if he/she says ‘take your passport with you to the waiting area’ or ‘leave your passport and go to the waiting area’ that you ask nicely for he/she to repeat, as you might experience some unpleasant shouting if you do exactly what they said not to.

Available from Global Entry, 100.00.
 

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