Entry to the old city of Jerusalem, Israel. ©2013 Jason HollandWhat is Global Entry?

Global Entry and the Trusted Traveler network "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. Though intended for frequent international travelers, there is no minimum number of trips necessary to qualify for the program. Participants may enter the United States by using automated kiosks located at select airports."

The Global Entry expedited customs process is available to pre-screened and approved travelers from the USA re-entering through a participating airport. Additionally, in a few cooperating countries such as Australia and New Zealand, Global Entry members enjoy expedited access through customs. Global Entry is different from the TSA Pre✓™ valid for expedited security processing at select airports in the USA.

To be approved for Global Entry, you must be pre-approved. To do this you must get an online account with GOES, path the non-refundable application fee, undergo a thorough background check, participate in an in-person interview, have your fingerprints scanned and get your picture taken. 

Once approved, you will receive a Global Entry card and a PASS ID number. This number will allow you to also participate in the TSA Pre✓™ program, but not vice versa. Upon arrival in the customs area of a participating airport, simply follow the signs for Global Entry. At one of the available kiosks you will scan your passport or U.S. permanent resident card, before scanning your fingerprints for identification purposes and having your photo taken. You will answer a few customs declarations questions such as are you bringing any plants into the country or have over $10,000 in cash with you? A receipt will print out that you take with you.

If the receipt does not print correctly, go to the front of the normal customs declaration area where you will be a priority to the lines of passengers waiting to go through.

Collect your luggage and proceed out of the area where you will hand your receipt to one of the customs attendants.