Global Entry vs. TSA Pre-Check vs. NEXUS: Which Is Best For You?
Photo courtesy of TSA
The Transportation Security Administration is here to help you.
OK, stop the snickering and the jokes about long lines and body searches.
The TSA has programs in place for navigating security with a little more ease; you just have to pick the right one for you.
Here’s a breakdown of TSA Pre-Check, Global Entry and Nexus.
• For U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents
• $85 for a five-year membership
• Apply online and then make an appointment at one of several enrollment centers around the country to provide fingerprints and identification.
• No passport required
• Mostly for frequent and business travelers who can go through separate security lines and leave on their shoes and belts, and keep their laptops in the bag.
• Adults approved for Pre-Check can go through security with minors ages 12 and under, even if that minor child has not gone through a Pre-Check application on his own.
• For U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, Dutch citizens, South Korean citizens, Mexican nationals and Canadian citizens and residents who already are part of the NEXUS program.
• Passport required, or lawful permanent resident card.
• $100 for a five-year membership. Even if you think you might never travel internationally, it would behoove you to pay the extra $15 from the Pre-Check program to Global Entry.
• Apply online and then make an appointment at one of several enrollment centers around the country to provide fingerprints and identification, and to be interviewed. You cannot be qualified for Global Entry without the in-person interview.
• Global Entry is somewhat similar to Pre-Check in that the goal is to get you through customs quickly. This is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) program that expedites clearance for pre-approved, low-risk international travelers upon arrival in the United States. You can go straight to a Global Entry kiosk without filling out any forms. Insert your passport or U.S. permanent resident card, place fingertips on the scanner for fingerprint verification, and make a customs declaration. Done.
• For U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, Canadian citizens and lawful permanent residents of Canada.
• No passport is required.
• $50 for a five-year membership.
• Pre-enroll online, visit an enrollment center for an interview, provide fingerprints and verify ID.
• NEXUS is the Canadian version of Global Entry, offering expedited processing at airports and land borders when entering the U.S. and Canada. The good news is, it’s less expensive and children are also free until they are 18 years of age. The bad news is, there are only a handful of enrollment centers for NEXUS, as opposed to dozens for Global Entry, and they are located near the Canadian borders in places like upstate New York, Maine, Montana and Washington State.
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