What is Global Entry and Why You Should Get it.
Updated: Dec 18, 2018
If you plan to travel abroad a bit, I highly recommend you get a Global Entry card. Global Entry is run by the U.S. Customs Border Control that gives pre-approved clearance to low risk travelers entering the U.S. The program eliminates waiting in line to clear customs by storing members information in a database. When members arrive in the airport from abroad, they go to a Global Entry kiosk where they scan their passport , fingerprints and face . Then they complete a customs declaration form, receive a receipt print out which they hand to an officer on the way to baggage claim. The process takes about 5 minutes. This saves a HUGE amount of time. In Atlanta you can easily save an hour of waiting in line. Don’t believe me? Check out how long you have to wait at your airport: https://awt.cbp.gov.
To get a Global Entry card, you apply online at https://ttp.cbp.dhs.gov/ .
It costs $100 and lasts 5 years. The government does a serious background check to make sure you are a low risk traveler. If your background is the least bit sketchy (DUI, arrest record), don’t waste your time as the $100 is nonrefundable. If you are deemed worthy, you schedule an in-person interview at the nearest Enrollment Center ( usually in the nearest airport). The interview is to verify your low-risk status. The agent takes a picture of your face and your fingerprints for their database. Within 3 weeks your card will be sent to you.
With Global Entry your benefits are twofold. One, you get TSA Precheck on all your flights. Which means you go through a separate line where you can leave your shoes and belt on. And you can keep your laptop and small liquids in your bag.
Second, and a biggie, you don’t wait in line to go through customs and passport control when you come back to the U.S. from abroad.
I highly recommend you get a Global Entry Card. You will thank me.