There’s a new way to skip the wait for a Global Entry interview

Feb 16, 2020

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Global Entry is one of the best expedited security programs out there for frequent travelers. With it, preapproved, low-risk travelers can take advantage of mostly automated customs and immigration processing when arriving in the U.S. instead of waiting in a potentially long queue for an immigration officer. Plus, Global Entry membership includes TSA PreCheck, which can save you even more time at security on departing flights.

For the latest travel news, deals and points and miles tips please subscribe to The Points Guy daily email newsletter.

While the Global Entry application itself is relatively straightforward and getting the $100 application fee reimbursed is very easy, completing the required interview component has always been a pain. Aside from there not being many easily accessible enrollment centers for those outside of major cities, finding available interview appointment slots can be extremely difficult. In fact, it could sometimes take weeks or months before you get an appointment.

Related: Still waiting for your Global Entry renewal? You’re not alone, and here’s why

One way applicants have been able to get around the wait has been by taking advantage of the Enrollment on Arrival service. As the name suggests, the service allows conditionally approved applicants to complete Global Entry interviews as part of the immigration process when arriving at the airport after an international trip, rather than having to wait to schedule it at a later date. The service is available at over 50 airport locations throughout 27 states (plus U.S. pre-clearance facilities in Canada, the UAE, Bermuda and the Bahamas).

Related: How to enroll in Global Entry on arrival

But what if you don’t have an international trip coming up and want to speed up your application process so you can begin to take advantage of the TSA PreCheck benefit? There’s a new workaround to skip the wait.

In early February 2020, the Department of Homeland Security announced that it would immediately suspend New York state residents from enrolling in Global Entry and other Trusted Traveler Programs because of the state’s new “Green Light Law”, which bars agencies like U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) from accessing DMV records without a court order. The ban forbids New Yorkers from both enrolling and re-enrolling in the Trusted Travel Programs.

Related: New York residents have been banned from enrolling in Global Entry: 6 of your burning questions answered

While the over 200,000 New Yorkers who have either been conditionally approved or were planning to renew their memberships have had their applications and interviews canceled, the CBP’s New York enrollment centers are still operating per usual — at least for the time being. As a result, the appointment schedules are wide-open.

Regardless of your residence, if you are conditionally approved for enrollment, you can schedule your interview at any of the enrollment centers. So, if your local enrollment center doesn’t have any available slots for a long time and your travels take you to New York soon, it’s worth checking to see if they have appointment slots that work for you.

There are four enrollment centers in New York state:

  • Bowling Green (U.S. Customs House)
  • Champlain, New York Enrollment Center
  • New York John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK)
  • Niagara Falls, New York Enrollment Center

If you simply can’t get to another interview center, keep checking back at yours for cancellations. You can also always try getting a walk-in interview.

If you haven’t applied for Global Entry yet, be sure to pay for the application fee using one of the many credit cards that provides a statement credit for a TSA PreCheck or Global Entry application fee every four or five years (up to $100), such as the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, United Explorer Card and Chase Sapphire ReserveWhen your interview day arrives, be sure to arrive on time and bring all of the necessary documents, including a printout of your letter of conditional approval, valid passport(s) or permanent resident card and evidence of residency.

Related: Top credit cards for Global Entry and TSA PreCheck

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants in the first three months of card membership.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 50,000 Bonus Miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
  • Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants with your card within the first 3 months of membership.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.