WASHINGTON—U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske announced a new milestone for CBP’s Trusted Traveler Programs—enrolling their five millionth member. Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI and FAST provide expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers and truck drivers upon arrival in the United States. Global Entry, with more than 3 million members now enrolled, accounts for an average of 10 percent of all international air arrivals.
“The success of our Trusted Traveler Programs is a testament to the focus we have had on advancing the international arrivals process over the last few years,” said Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske. “These programs have helped reduce wait times at airports across the country, all while welcoming more travelers than ever and maintaining our primary mission—security.”
Trusted Traveler Program membership has grown by more than 53 percent since FY14 from more than 3.25 million members to more than 5 million members. During that same time period, Global Entry membership grew approximately 81 percent—from more than 1.6 million members to more than 3 million members.
Global Entry kiosks are located in 47 U.S airports and 13 Preclearance airports where members are processed in about a minute. Global Entry members also receive the added benefit of being pre-eligible to participate in TSAPre✓™, the Transportation Security Administration’s expedited screening program.
NEXUS was launched in 2000 as a joint effort between CBP and the Canada Border Services Agency. Nexus members experience expedited clearance into both the United States and Canada. NEXUS members enjoy the benefits of Global Entry at no additional cost by using the automated kiosks for entry at participating airports. U.S. citizens, U.S. lawful permanent residents and Canadian citizens also receive TSAPre✓™ benefits.
SENTRI recently celebrated its 20th anniversary. Participants may enter the United States by using dedicated primary lanes into the United States at Southern land border ports of entry. U.S. citizens and U.S. lawful permanent residents also receive Global Entry and TSAPre✓™ benefits.
The Free and Secure Trade (FAST) program is a commercial clearance program for known low-risk shipments entering the United States from Canada and Mexico. FAST enrollment is open to truck drivers from the United States, Canada and Mexico.
Trusted Traveler Programs are just one way CBP is making the international arrivals process more traveler friendly. CBP is working towards eliminating paper forms like the customs declaration form, expanding the number of foreign visitors that can use Automated Passport Control (APC) kiosks, and rolling out Mobile Passport Control to a significant number of airports this year.
U.S. and Canadian citizens, Legal Permanent Residents and returning Visa Waiver Program international travelers can utilize the more than 1,300 APC kiosks located at 42 airports worldwide to expedite their entry. Travelers use the self-service kiosks to submit their customs declaration form and biographic information.
Travelers arriving at 12 international airports (ATL, DEN, DFW, EWR, FLL, JFK, MIA, MCO, ORD, SEA, SFO, and SJC) also have a mobile option to submit their customs declaration form and biographic information. Mobile Passport Control (MPC) is the first authorized app to expedite travelers’ entry into the United States. U.S. and Canadian citizens can submit their information to CBP via the app prior to arrival. Android and iPhone users can download the Mobile Passport app for free from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.
APC and MPC do not require pre-approval, are free to use and do not collect any new information on travelers. As a result, travelers experience shorter wait times, less congestion and faster processing. These programs allow CBP officers to focus less on administrative tasks and more on law enforcement operations which ultimately results in enhanced security and a streamlined inspection process for citizens and visitors alike.
With the expansion of Trusted Traveler Programs, APC, and MPC, average wait times were down 3 percent at the top 10 airports in FY15.
CBP continues to maximize resources to support a 16 percent growth in international air arrivals since 2009. CBP is working to bring advances in technology and automation to the passenger processing environment while exploring public-private partnerships to help support current and future mission requirements.