Global Entry is a discretionary program offered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) as part of their Trusted Traveler Programs, allowing for an expedited immigration customs process upon entering the United States. CBP's Trusted Traveler Programs are risk-based programs to facilitate the entry of pre-approved travelers. Global Entry is specifically geared towards "low-risk" international travelers. Instead of waiting in a long customs line, Global Entry members proceed to designated kiosks, present their machine-readable passport or U.S. permanent resident card, place their fingerprints on the scanner for fingerprint verification and complete a customs declaration all at once, and within seconds receive a transaction receipt and move onto baggage claim.
CBP takes a hardline stance on what constitutes "low-risk." All applicants must pass a rigorous process including a thorough background check against criminal, law enforcement, customs, immigration, agriculture, and terrorist indices to include biometric fingerprint checks, and a personal interview with a CBP officer. Even meeting all of the eligibility criteria does not guarantee approval or continued participation in the program. Once approved, global entry membership may be revoked if your circumstances change. Specifically, you may be denied membership in the Global Entry program or your approved membership may be revoked if you:
In order to apply for Global Entry membership, you must be a U.S. citizen, U.S. lawful permanent resident, or a citizen of the following countries:
Eligible individuals apply for Global Entry membership through CBP's Trusted Traveler Programs (TTP) online account system. Each applicant, regardless of age, must have their own account and must submit a detailed application including travel, personal, family, and professional information along with a $100 application fee. CBP will review each application and if conditionally approved, an applicant will be required to schedule an interview at a Global Entry Enrollment Center or through "Enrollment upon Arrival (EoA)" and interview during the applicant's next admissibility inspection when landing in an participating international terminal. To complete the interview, an applicant must be in possession of the following documents:
Because of the discretionary nature of admission into the program, revocations or denials of Global Entry membership applications may be difficult to overcome and can take months to process through government channels with little or no substantive response. However, if you believe the decision was based upon inaccurate or incomplete information, you may request reconsideration through the Trusted Traveler Program application website.
Nixon Peabody has successfully helped our clients navigate this bureaucratic process, both to ensure approval with initial membership applications and to overcome denials or revocations in a time sensitive manner through strategic engagement with DHS and CBP authorities when requesting review. Our unique experience at DHS creates a definitive advantage when determining what issues or derogatory information may be impacting an applicant's eligibility or readmission.