Recently won a new international account? Chances are you’ll be making several overseas trips to manage your new business. One of the best hacks you can buy for getting through customs is Global Entry. Global Entry is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection program that allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers. In addition to fast entry back into the U.S. at a customs checkpoints, participants are also approved for TSA PreCheck, which enables you to bypass regular domestic security lines as well. The two will make international and domestic travel easier, and it's definitely worth the cost if you have several trips in your near future.
To get the ball rolling, register on the Global Online Enrollment System and complete your online application. You will pay a $100 non-refundable fee with your application. For reference, TSA PreCheck clearance costs $85 and does not include the expedited customs aspect.
Getting your approval for the program requires a rigorous background check and in-person interview. The popularity of the program has backed up wait times, and the entire process could take from three to six months. You must complete an in-person interview with a U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer at an enrollment center. Interviews usually take about 20 minutes and don’t forget to bring a printed copy of the conditional approval that you will receive via email.
ABOUT THE INTERVIEW PROCESS
During the in-person interview, your photo will be taken along with a set of digital fingerprints. Then you have a conversation with an agent who will verify your information and ask some basic questions like:
- Are you a U.S. resident?
- Do you have a second passport or claim to citizenship in another country?
- Have you ever been arrested?
- Have you ever broken customs or immigration laws?
- Have you ever transported something where the contents were unknown to you?
Don’t forget to bring:
- A copy of the conditional approval notification received via email
- Your valid passport
- A proof of residency document like a driver’s license, utility bill, rental contract or mortgage statement
Become a Trusted Traveler
At the end of the interview, if you are approved, you will be provided with your new Trusted Traveler ID number. When making your airline reservations, you’ll enter this on all your new reservations and update old ones. If your company works with a Travel Management Company, your agent can ensure that all of your current and future itineraries include your Trusted Traveler number. You’ll find that your boarding passes will now include a note for TSA Pre-Check, when available, and for Global Entry.
The Global Entry program is open to U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents as well as citizens of Argentina, Australia, Canada, Colombia, Germany, India, Mexico, New Zealand, Panama, South Korea, Singapore, Switzerland, Taiwan and United Kingdom. Global Entry members who are not U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents must maintain updated visa information with Customs and Border Protection.
Congratulations, your time in airport security lines just got shorter!
At participating airports, program participants may skip the regular security line and proceed directly to dedicated Global Entry kiosks. In addition to being available at most major American airports, you may also use Global Entry to enter foreign airports like Dublin, Montreal and Saipan.
At the kiosk, you’ll present your valid passport or U.S. permanent resident card, place your fingertips on the scanner for verification, and make a customs declaration. The kiosk issues a transaction receipt, directs you to baggage claim and the exit. Perhaps the best perk of Global Entry is that those lanes may be open at times when Customs & Immigration is closed.
Congratulations, your time in airport security lines just got shorter! Global Entry is valid for five years, then you will follow the same application process to reapply. Learn more>>
If your company is booking more clients and sending out more people on work trips, make the most of your travel budget by working with a travel management company. Find out more, read Keep Your Operation Lean: Outsource Business Travel.Ready to speak with a corporate travel expert about how you can better manage your business travel? Get in touch with us to schedule a free consultation that can help lower costs and improve employee productivity.