Several Trusted Traveler programs exist through the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). These programs offer an enhanced passenger experience, while also improving security and increasing system-wide expediencies. Each program is customized based on the individual’s travel needs, and many of them have mutual benefits.
For $85, you can breeze through security checkpoints without having to stop to have your laptop, shoes, liquids, belts, and light jackets inspected- for 5 years. Available to U.S. citizens, nationals, and lawful permanent residents, a simple online application, a 10-minute in-person background check, ID verification and fingerprint collection are all you need to collect the perks of this program. 98% of TSA Pre✓ passengers waited less than 5 minutes for security checks in December 2016. Over 180 airports and 30 airlines serve more than 4 million members through this program. It’s available for domestic flights only.
If you fly both within the U.S. and internationally, Global Entry may be for you. Set up through U.S. Customs and Border Protection, pre-approved, low-risk travelers enjoy expedited clearance upon arrival to the United States and other countries. Select airports have automated kiosks through which members can enter upon arrival, present their machine-readable passport of U.S. permanent resident card, scan their fingerprint, and complete a customs declaration. The kiosk prints a receipt and points the traveler to the appropriate baggage claim.
Pre-approval is attained through a rigorous background check and in-person interview prior to enrollment, as well as ID verification and fingerprint collection. The idea of Global Entry is to expedite travelers through the process, although they still may be selected for deeper examination. Violating the program’s terms and conditions will result in appropriate legal action and program termination. A 5-year membership for Global Entry costs $100 and includes the TSA Pre✓ experience for U.S. citizens and U.S. lawful permanent residents.
Those who frequently travel between Canada and the U.S. will want to enroll in the NEXUS program. A five-year membership costs $50 and includes the TSA Pre✓ experience for U.S. citizens and U.S. lawful permanent residents. Pre-screened travelers benefit from quicker processing when entering either country. Dedicated processing lines are in place in northern border entry ports, kiosks when entering Canada via air travel, and Global Entry kiosks when entering the United States from Canada from Canadian Preclearance airports. Members also receive faster processing at marine reporting locations. Membership requires an in-person interview, ID verification and fingerprint collection before enrollment.
Secure Electronic Network for Travelers Rapid Inspection
Frequent travelers between the United States and Mexico can get expedited processing through the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s SENTRI. If you are pre-approved and low-risk, you will enjoy faster integration into the United States. Participants may enter the U.S. using dedicated lanes at Southern border points.
Participants must be pre-approved, and all applicants undergo a rigorous background check and in-person interview before enrollment, as well as ID verification and fingerprint collection. A five-year membership costs $122.25 and includes the TSA Pre✓ experience and Global Entry experience for U.S. citizens and U.S. lawful permanent residents.
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