Global Entry is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) program that allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travellers upon arrival in the United States. Members enter the United States through automatic kiosks at select airports.
At airports, program members proceed to Global Entry kiosks, present their machine-readable UK passport or U.S. permanent resident card, place their fingerprints on the scanner for fingerprint verification and complete a customs declaration. The kiosk issues the traveller a transaction receipt and directs the traveller to baggage claim and the exit.
Travelers must be pre-approved for the Global Entry program. All applicants undergo a rigorous background check and in-person interview before enrolment.
While Global Entryís goal is to speed travellers through the process, members may still be selected for further examination when entering the United States. Any violation of the programís terms and conditions will result in the appropriate enforcement action and termination of the travellerís membership privileges.
What are the advantages
There is no doubt that one of the most frustrating things facing visitors is what can be lengthy queues to see the Immigration Officers and thus gain entry to the Country. None of us can do anything about being held on the plane whilst the Immigration hall is full but it is frustrating to exit the plane and then be held up for what can be hours.
A way around this that is particularly beneficial for those visiting regularly is to apply for Global Entry and bypass the Immigration lines completely.
How do I apply
The process is in 3 stages and can be achieved in a few short weeks.
1. An application must be made to the Home Office and a fee of £42 paid on application by Credit or Debit Card.
This application is electronic and if the applicant is approved to go forward to the next stage a unique code is issued. There is no guarantee of being approved and a failure does not mean that monies paid will be returned.
This is the link to apply
If approved the applicant is normally notified by return E Mail within 48 hours.
2. When the Home Office code is received then application is made to the US Customs & Border Protection at the Department of Homeland Security.
A fee is payable of $100 that again is non-refundable should that application fail
It is essential the applicant has a mobile phone as each time an attempt to log on the CBP website is made they send a unique numerical code via text message to the applicant.
If approved the applicant is normally notified by return E Mail within 7 days.
3. At this stage the applicant can log back on to the CBP website and schedule an appointment at one of the National centres for the final interview.
This interview is straightforward and involves examination of ones Passport and Driving Licence and a few basic security questions.
NB. Interview upon Arrival
For some time, certain Airports have allowed Global Entry applicants who have passed the first two stages to be interviewed by the Immigration Officer upon arrival without scheduling an appointment.
This facility is now available at: -
If approved the website is updated that you are now approved for Global Entry.
This is the link to apply.
The additional benefit with Global Entry is the ability to participate in TSA Precheck for participating airlines (This includes Virgin but as of 1 May 2018 does not include BA Thomas Cook Thomson or Norwegian) which allows one to bypass the normal security lines when leaving America and instead use the TSA Pre lines which are quicker, have next to no lines and do not require shoes to be removed, liquids to be in a clear bag and laptops can remain in hand luggage.