Long Security Line

Want to breeze through security and immigration lines? Listen up.

Global Entry is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) program that allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers upon arrival in the United States. It’s open to U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, Dutch citizens, South Korean citizens and Mexican nationals. Canadian citizens and residents can get Global Entry through membership in the NEXUS program.

Four steps to joining Global Entry:

  1. Apply Online ($100 non-refundable fee for five years.)
  2. Schedule an Interview
  3. Interview Determines Your Eligibility
  4. Provide Identification

Currently, there’s 38 enrollment centers from Boston to Honolulu. Most are in major U.S. airports including San Juan but New York, Houston and Washington DC have downtown offices.

If you have the American Express Platinum card pay your application fee with it because AMEX will refund the $100 on your next statement.

Another huge perk of Global Entry is that you automatically get approved for TSA Pre✓ which allows for expedited screening to pre-approved airlines so travelers can leave on their shoes, light outerwear and belt, keep their laptop in its case and their 3-1-1 compliant liquids/gels bag in a carry-on in select screening lanes in the U.S.. Gotta love that! Just be sure to input your Trusted Traveler number (on the back of your Global Entry card) and log into your frequent flyer accounts and enter that information into your profile under “Known Traveler ID.”

Imagine not having to wait in a long line or fill out any handwritten forms after your flight to the United States. Just walk up to one of the kiosks, confirm your identity (photo and fingerprints for Global Entry and scanning your eyes for Nexus) and answer the standard immigration questions and go!

Remember, to apply, all you need to do is fill out a 15-minute online questionnaire, accept a background check and go for a 30-minute interview. It’s good at 35 US airports, eight in Canada and two in Ireland.

If you travel to Canada often, then apply for NEXUS first since it’s only $50 for five years and it will automatically get you enrolled in Global Entry. Plus children under 18 get it for free. I give it two HUGE thumbs up!

Note: If you don’t travel internationally and just want TSA Pre✓ the Transportation Security Administration began inviting everyone just yesterday to apply for the expedited security PreCheck program for $85. Previously, you had to be an eligible frequent traveler or be enrolled in one of CBP’s Global Entry, SENTRI or NEXUS Trusted Traveler programs.

Do you have Global Entry or any other of the CBP Trusted Traveler Programs? If so, please tell everyone how incredible it is!

15 Comments On "How to Breeze Through Security and Immigration Lines"
  1. angela behrens|

    Would like to be able to send an email to Johnny, but haven’t been able to find an email address. H E L P ! ! !

    1. Johnny Jet|

      I just emailed you

  2. esme|

    Best $100 I ever spent (actually, my company allowed me to expense it). The process was painless and it spared me a missed flight on an international trip the first time I applied it.

  3. Marni|

    So many of your posts do not apply to Canada and Canadians. For instance I looked into the AmEx Platinum card. Price is a few hundred dollars more per year, etc etc. There’s frequently the assumption by Americans that everything will be applicable across North America but this is very often not the case. I’m a member of Nexus by the way and it’s great.

  4. Kim Button|

    Just don’t wait until the last minute to apply. My application took two months, and apparently the wait is getting even longer now as the popularity increases. Apply well before you NEED to, just in case.

  5. Amy N|

    I applied about a month ago, and my interview is tomorrow. My inspiration? Having to stand in a 45-minute line in DIA, watching the pre-check folks breeze by. Worth the $20/year for sure!

  6. Bill|

    Well, I am cheap and had to pay for it myself–but it is the best $100 I have spent in a long time. I travel internationally about twice a year and still think it is a great benefit. The TSA Pre-check is the big benefit for my domestic travel–I breeze through TSA in less than a minute!

  7. Nick Tuzzolino|

    I’d like to know the best way to LEAVE the U.S. in addition to using Global entry.

  8. Anonymous|

    I applied two yrs ago and have never been able to use it at JFK ! Either the machines were not working or the personnel was not capable of directing me….or other airports ( Texas) didn’t ‘ have the service yet . So all in all $100 wasted…I just fly internationally two or three times a year and thought at first this was a great idea, but must still go shoeless etc…
    Will try again in a few weeks….

  9. Jan|

    There are only a few Airlines using this, why?! I see them advertising this on T.V. and at the Airport, yet when you get it you can’t use it unless you are flying the Airlines that are, I hope I haven’t wasted 100.00.

  10. Anonymous|

    It should be made clear that not all “Platinum” cards qualify for the reimbursement. I have an Am Ex Platinum Cash Rebate card through Costco. It does not qualify for the reimbursement. I found this out after I applied for the Trusted Traveler Program! Now I am out $100, plus I have told others to apply. Now I feel like a fool because they won’t get the reimbursement either.

  11. Kristy|

    Love Global Entry so much! We just got back from Australia and skipped the longest lines when we arrived in DFW. We’ve used it successfully in multiple other cities too. Best money ever spent traveling!

  12. Felicia|

    I just got my memebrship approved last Sunday. Went to the Miami airport office for final interview but haven’t had a chance to use it yet. Was hoping i’d have it before returning from Japan 2 weeks ago…next trip is Mexico. I’ll let you know how it goes :)

  13. Jude Sturman (@TechNTools)|

    So it sounds like if you have AMEX platinum just go ahead and get Global Entry instead of NEXUS. Will that be useful for international/frequent travel to Canada?

    Great stuff Johnny!

    1. Johnny Jet|

      If you get NEXUS you get Global Entry as well but it’s not reverse. It’s actually cheaper to get NEXUS ($50) so if you travel to Canada often that’s the route to take.

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