All About Global Entry


Have you ever returned from an international trip to be met with a huge customs line? Ugh, that used to be the worst for me! But then I got Global Entry. I can now breeze through customs no matter what U.S. city I land in. Once, on returning from Turks and Caicos, our first U.S. city was Chicago and the customs line was long and slow. Our flight connection was only about an hour.  I had Global Entry and was through quickly and heading to the final flight in another terminal. Meanwhile, my husband, who doesn’t have Global Entry barely, and I mean barely, made our connecting flight.


How to Get Global Entry

Global Entry is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) program that allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers upon arrival in the United States. You apply online.  Additionally, you have to pay $100 but if you pay with the right credit card, that amount will be credited to you. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will schedule an interview for you after you are accepted. This interview occurs at a Global Entry Enrollment Center. These appointments can be scheduled out quite a bit so don’t plan on getting Global Entry right before international travel. At the interview, they will:

  • ask you questions,
  • take your photo, and
  • collect biometric information, for example, scan your fingerprints.


You will need to bring your valid passport(s) and one other form of identification, such as a driver’s license or ID card to the interview.

There is another way to get your interview and I did this way. My interview at DIA was months out. I decided to do the Enrollment on Arrival where I could get my interview at an airport upon arriving back in the United States from an international destination. I did this at San Francisco International Airport when I returned home from London one time.


Blue passport and airline ticket

Get through customs quicker with Global Entry!

Cost of Global Entry

Global Entry costs $100 and lasts for five years. Instead of waiting in long customs lines, you go to a kiosk, answer a few questions, have an immigration officer verify your passport and you are on your way. I love Global Entry!

Credit cards that provide a credit for that $100 fee include the same cards that give you TSA credit. If you travel internationally, just get Global Entry because it also includes TSA Precheck. You do not need to get both. However, you do need a passport to get Global Entry and it takes more time to get the interview.


Credit Cards with Global Entry Benefits

The following credit cards come with credit for Global Entry or TSA Precheck. Remember, that Global Entry includes TSA Precheck so I would use the credit for that.

These cards give a credit every four years so you will never have to pay for this great benefit if you keep at least one of these cards. Additionally, if you have more than one of these cards with a Global Entry, you can use credit for a family member.

Bottom Line

We love to travel. We don’t love standing in custom lines so Global Entry is a great benefit to have if you plan to travel internationally!


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