Does My Credit Card’s PreCheck/Global Entry Credit Cover NEXUS?

Nov 1, 2018

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“Reader Questions” are answered twice a week by TPG Associate Editor Brendan Dorsey.

While waiting in line is usually an inevitability while traveling, there are a few ways to cut down on your time in security queues with a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck membership. Even better, many credit cards reimburse the fees associated with signing up for either of these programs. TPG reader Justin wants to know if he can get reimbursed for NEXUS, which allows for expedited entry between the US and Canada…

Has anyone had any luck getting their NEXUS fee reimbursed through one of these many credit cards of offers?

TPG Reader Justin

For those unfamiliar with NEXUS, it’s a jointly managed program between the US and Canada that cuts down on times in customs line when trying to enter either of the countries. The US Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) describes it as follows:

The NEXUS program allows pre-screened travelers expedited processing when entering the United States and Canada. Program members use dedicated processing lanes at designated northern border ports of entry, NEXUS kiosks when entering Canada by air and Global Entry kiosks when entering the United States via Canadian Preclearance airports.

One of the nifty aspects about NEXUS is that you actually receive Global Entry privileges (i.e. not having to wait in a long customs line and fill out CBP entry form), even when arriving from other countries besides Canada. Additionally, NEXUS members usually receive TSA PreCheck when when they add their Known Traveler Numbers onto airline bookings.

Premium credit cards like The Platinum Card® from American Express and the Chase Sapphire Reserve along with even lower annual fee products like the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card or the Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card offer statement credits that will cover the cost of a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application.

Many premium travel rewards credit cards come with high annual fees but a slew of benefits.
These premium travel rewards credit cards all come with TSA PreCheck and Global Entry application credits.

Unfortunately, unlike Global Entry and PreCheck, a Nexus application will generally not be reimbursed when paying with a card that offers a credit for either of the previously mentioned programs. The terms of these benefits sometimes even spell out that NEXUS applications are specifically not covered by the credit. While we have heard of exceptions being made when cardholders call, we’ve heard just as many reports of readers being denied for these credits, so it’s probably not something you should expect.

However, if you’re a frequent traveler between the US and Canada, it may still be worth applying to NEXUS because you get many of the same benefits as Global Entry and PreCheck. The application price is also quite low; just $50 enrolls you in the program for five years. So, if you’ve already used your card’s credit or don’t have a card in your wallet that offers one, consider signing up for NEXUS instead. To sweeten the deal, NEXUS is free for children up to 18 years old, making it a great option for families. With Global Entry, each person has to apply individually and pay the $100 application fee, regardless of age.

Just like Global Entry, you’ll have to go in for an in-person interview to get approved for NEXUS, but the main downside to the program is that there are fewer enrollment centers than there are for Global Entry. If you do decide to go the NEXUS route, consider having your whole family apply and make everyone’s interview appointments on the same day. Head of TPG Family Travel Summer Hull enrolled her family and herself in the program in one fell swoop.

Thanks for the question, Justin, and if you’re a TPG reader who’d like us to answer a question of your own, tweet us at @thepointsguy, message us on Facebook or email us at info@thepointsguy.com.

Featured image by Chris Hondros/Getty Images.

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