For international travelers, the Global Entry program is a way to make traveling easier, more convenient, and hassle-free. If you are wondering "What is Global Entry?" explore our website for details on the program. The Global Entry application process is an important part of qualifying for the program. Our site can inform you of the benefits and eligibility for enrollment. Global Entry cost and membership durations are also covered on our site. The Global Online Enrollment System (GOES) is explained in detail as well, for your convenience.
In every case, a Global Entry application must be approved after processing for you to begin the enrollment process. Then, a Global Entry enrollment center can be contacted to set up an interview. To obtain a Global Entry card, you will need to successfully complete this interview and meet all qualifications of the program. More details on these steps to apply for Global Entry are provided in the sections below, but it is important to note that not all airport locations are included in the program. Thus, learning which Global Entry locations exist is an important step before applying for the program. Only these locations allow travelers quick entry through U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and airport security.
Additionally, the Global Entry program has many differences when compared to the TSA PreCheck program and other Trusted Traveler programs. Before you apply for Global Entry, review all the sections below to see if this program is right for you:
- Features of the Global Entry program
- Reasons to apply for Global Entry
- Global Entry program qualifications
- Global Entry application denial
- Enrolling in the Global Entry program with the Global Online Enrollment System (GOES)
- Membership terms and Global Entry cost
- Participating Global Entry locations
- The Global Entry program vs. the TSA PreCheck program
Features of the Global Entry Program
What is Global Entry? The Global Entry card was designed for travelers who are pre-approved by the government to quickly get through airport security. As such, Global Entry program members who are traveling internationally can be efficiently cleared at U.S. Customs and Border Protection, due to their pre-approved status.
Global access members can take advantage of this program in 59 airports by going to an automatic kiosk to scan their permanent resident card or passport. However, Global Entry card holders will still need to offer electronic fingerprints and completed customs declaration forms before being cleared. Furthermore, this expedited clearance may not be offered in unique situations, such as when the traveler has items that need to be claimed at customs. Also, in certain circumstances, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection authority may have further questions for card holders.
Reasons to Apply for Global Entry
The Global Entry program is especially helpful when there are long lines in customs or airport security. Global Entry card holders can skip the long lines by checking in at an automatic kiosk and getting all their documents processed in a timely manner. Filling out an electronic customs form makes for a smoother and faster experience than completing a traditional paper form.
Those approved for the Global Entry program are also qualified to become TSA PreCheck members. The TSA PreCheck program allows travelers to get through airport security quickly, without the hassle of removing belts, shoes, laptops or jackets. This quick and easy security screening process can make your travel day all the more convenient.
Global Entry Program Qualifications
To apply for the Global Entry program, you must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, and you cannot have ever been convicted of certain crimes. Besides the aforementioned, a Global Entry application may also be accepted from residents of the following countries:
- South Korea
- The Netherlands
- The United Kingdom
However, Global Entry program enrollment may feature extra eligibility requirements for non-U.S. citizens.
Parents who are already members of the Global Entry program need to successfully enroll their children into the program as well if they want them to receive the travel benefits. In these cases, the representatives at Global Entry Enrollment Centers request that a parent or legal guardian accompany any minor attempting to complete an interview for the travel program. Furthermore, travelers under 18 years of age will need to present signed permission from a parent when applying.
An incomplete Global Entry application, or an application that provides false information, will be rejected instantly. Applicants who were convicted of crimes, who have other violations, who are currently awaiting charges, or who are being investigated by law enforcement may also be denied entry into the program.
Global Entry Application Denial
If your Global Entry application was denied, a written notice will be sent to your mailing address. The letter will outline the reasons for your application's denial, such as if incomplete or false information was given. If denied admission into the Global Entry program, you can appeal the ruling through the U.S. Customs and Border Protection's Trusted Traveler Ombudsman. Take the time to explain why the application was incomplete or offered incorrect information, and you may be reconsidered for the program.
Enrolling in the Global Entry Program With the Global Online Enrollment System (GOES)
The Global Online Enrollment System (GOES) requires all users to first create an account, including minors. Global Entry program travelers who wish to use the system can log in and submit their applications electronically. They can also pay the enrollment fee using an electronic funds transfer or credit card. This fee is nonrefundable, whether the application is approved or denied. Global Entry applications can only be submitted through GOES, and cannot be mailed. U.S. Customs and Border Protection will complete a background check and review your application once it is submitted online. Upon GOES application approval, you will be asked to schedule an interview at a Global Entry Enrollment Center.
Using your Global Entry application, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer will ask you questions to ensure your answers match up. You must bring your permanent resident card or passport and a second form of identification with a photo. The questions asked by the interviewer are typically intended to confirm the information you provided on your application. Then, after GOES Global Entry approval and a successful interview, your photo and fingerprints will be taken to start processing your membership card. Once you have your card in hand, it can be used at participating seaports and land border crossings. However, only passports and permanent resident cards are accepted at Global Entry kiosks.
Note: The SENTRI and NEXUS Trusted Traveler Programs may also be used in conjunction with Global Entry.
Membership Terms and Global Entry Cost
The cost of Global Entry membership is often a concern for applicants. However, the program is only $100 for five years of membership. There is also GOES application fee that covers the required background check, administrative costs and the issuance of the Global Entry card. The Global Entry program fee cannot be refunded, even if an application is denied. The cost of Global Entry is affordable for most travelers, and well worth the investment for those who frequently travel overseas.
Furthermore, for those wondering, "How long does Global Entry last and how will I know when to submit my request for Global Entry renewal?" the program will send an alert before the five-year period is over to remind you to begin the membership renewal process.
Participating Global Entry Locations
The Global Entry program currently has 59 participating airports. These airports all have Global Entry kiosks for member convenience and allow for quick travel. Many Global Entry locations are in the United States, but a few participating airports exist overseas, and many more are set to join as the years go by.
The Global Entry Program vs. the TSA PreCheck Program
The TSA PreCheck program and the Global Entry program are similar in their dedication to making traveling convenient for their members. However, there is no such thing as "TSA Global Entry," as the programs are kept separate. TSA PreCheck is run by the Transportation Security Administration, and the Global Entry program is administered by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
The Global Entry program is favored by international travelers because it focuses on overseas travel. The program makes it easier for international travelers to get through customs and land/sea border crossings. The TSA PreCheck program, on the other hand, is favored by primarily domestic travelers because it focuses on expediting the domestic airport security screening process.
Both Trusted Traveler programs start with an online enrollment procedure for applicants, which is followed by an in-person interview. Taking electronic fingerprints and creating photo identification are also involved with both programs. However, whereas TSA PreCheck members receive a Known Traveler Number that is printed on their boarding passes (so airport security can verify their membership), Global Entry members receive a card for membership verification purposes.
Regarding price, the TSA PreCheck cost is a bit lower than the cost associated with the Global Entry program, but membership in both programs lasts five years. Furthermore, an important advantage of Global Entry concerns the question that many potential members ask, "Does Global Entry include TSA PreCheck?" The answer is yes, as TSA PreCheck program eligibility is guaranteed for all Global Entry members, and they can use this program whenever they need to.