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Want to speed through Airport Security Lines?

People have been retaking traveling and this means, lots of congestion at the airport security line. If you are like me, you want to speed through those hundreds of fellow passengers waiting to go through the security line, below will find several Trusted Traveler Programs that will help you pass your security check in no time (most of the time). 😉

TSA PRECHECK

What is it?

TSA Pre-Check is a traveler program offered by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection that helps expedite travelers screening process through TSA security checkpoints at domestic U.S. airports. Not all of the U.S. airports participate on this program, but the most frequently transited do participate. For a list of the participating airports click here.

How does it work?

You have to apply online, once pre-approved, you will have to schedule an appointment at any of their enrollment centers where you will provide your fingerprints, supply citizenship and identity documents, plus pay the enrollment fee. After applying and attending your in-person appointment, once approved, you will receive a letter via mail with your “Known Traveler Number” (KTN) which you will provide to the airline when booking travel. You will not receive an identification card, only your KTN.

Benefits

You will no longer need to remove your shoes, laptops, 3-1-1 liquids, belts or light jackets when going through a TSA check point. You will have expedited security screening and most travelers get through security in 5 minutes or less. Children under 12 may accompany a parent/guardian with TSA PreCheck on their boarding passes in designated lanes.

How much?

TSA PreCheck costs $78 for a 5-year membership. If you’re interested in more information or applying, visit the Transportation Security Administration webpage for details.

GLOBAL ENTRY

What is it?

Global Entry is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) program that allows expedited clearance for pre-approved low-risk travelers upon entering the United States. All applicants will go through a rigorous background check and in-person interview before enrollment. Even if approved, you may still get selected for further examination when entering US soil from an international destination.

How does it work?

Once you pass the background check examination and gets approved, you will receive an identification card via mail. You will take this ID with you when traveling to international destinations, which you will use in order to return to the United States. When you arrive at the U.S. airport, you will go to a Global Entry kiosk, present your machine-readable passport or US permanent resident card, place your fingertips on the scanner for verification and complete the customs declaration. The kiosk will issue a transaction receipt which you will show the CBP officer assigned to the exit control point. Afterwards, you may proceed to baggage claim or exit.

Benefits

When you return to the U.S. from an international destination, the lines tend to be quite long, especially if you were in a full flight, and going through the security checkpoint takes time. A great thing about Global Entry is that it includes TSA PreCheck, so if you don’t have TSAPrecheck, I recommend you get Global Entry and get two services for the price of one. 😉

How much?

Global Entry membership costs $100 for a 5-year membership. If you’re interested in more information or applying, visit the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s webpage for details.

MOBILE PASSPORT CONTROL

What is it?

For those travelers who don’t participate on the TSA PreCheck or Global Entry traveler programs, there’s one option that may help them speed through process of submitting the passport and completing the customs declaration form upon entering the United States from an international destination. This is called Mobile Passport Control (MPC). This is an app that allows eligible travelers to submit their passport and customs declaration information through a free, secure app on their phone.

Using this app will streamline your entry process into the United States by reducing passport control inspection and overall wait time. Using this application does not require pre-approval and if you are able to use it successfully, you won’t have the need to complete a paper form or use an APC kiosk upon arrival.

How does it work?

After downloading the MPC application from either Google or Apple store, you will be prompted to create a profile with your passport information. Upon landing in the U.S., you will select your arrival airport or seaport and terminal, take a “selfi”, answer a series of CBP inspection-related questions and submit your transaction through the app. Once submitted, you will receive an electronic receipt with an encrypted Quick Response (QR) code. You will proceed and show your physical passport and mobile with the QR code receipt to the CBP officer to finalize their inspection for entry into the United States.

Benefits

Simple, shorter wait times upon arrival to the United States. Airports who have this service available have dedicated lines for MPC, which means you won’t have to make the huge line with everyone else. For a list of U.S. International airports and seaports that have dedicated lines for MPC, click here.

How much?

Free. Just download the app from the Google Store and Apple store to your mobile. If you’re interested in more information or applying, visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection webpage for details.

CLEAR

What is it?

CLEAR is another membership that allows you so go through airport security faster. In combination with TSA PreCheck, it’s the perfect way for a traveler to speed through airport security. In airport security, you have to go through two stops/lines, the first is to verify your identity with and the second one is to go through the physical screening. As a member of TSA Pre-Check you go to the shorter version of the ID and physical screening line. With the CLEAR membership, complementing the TSA PreCheck membership, you will go to the front of the physical screening queue.

How does it work?

You can sign up online or in person in any of their airport kiosks. If you decide to start your enrollment process online, you will have to complete it the next time you visit the airport. They will require you to provide your physical passport, scan your eyes or fingerprint and complete some identification verification questions. Not all airports/terminals have kiosks available, to verify if your favorite airport has CLEAR kiosks, click here.

When using CLEAR you will go to the kiosk, show the ambassador your boarding pass, scan your eyes, once you’re verified, the ambassador will escort you to the front of the physical screening line. There you will show your boarding pass to the TSA officer and you will be directed to your next stop. For you to move to the front of this line, you must be a participant of TSA Pre-Check.

Benefits

You will cut through the multitude of passengers waiting for ID verification and physical screening at the airport security line. You add up to 3 people to your CLEAR membership.

How much?

Annual membership for the principal of the account is $189 for a year membership. You can add up to 3 additional members to your account for $60. A tip, a few Amex cards offer the benefit of paying for an annual membership of CLEAR, just check your card details.

If you’re interested in more information or applying, visit the CLEAR website for details.

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