TSA PreCheck vs. Global Entry – NerdWallet

Federal trusted traveler programs like TSA PreCheck and Global Entry let you go through special security lanes at the airport — which normally means faster and less intrusive cover. Applying for either choice requires time, effort and cost, but some credit cards or frequent aviator programs will cover the expense. even if you fly only occasionally, applying could be worth it. » Learn more : credit cards with TSA PreCheck or Global Entry credits here ’ randomness our guide to both programs to help you choose the right expedite security program for you. Take a closer expect at the pros and cons of TSA PreCheck and Global Entry.

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The difference between TSA PreCheck and Global Entry

ball-shaped entry and TSA PreCheck differ in a few significant ways :

  • TSA PreCheck speeds up security screenings for flights departing from U.S. airports. As the name suggests, its run by the U.S. Transportation Security Administration. A five-year membership costs $ 85 .
  • Global Entry provides the benefits of TSA PreCheck plus faster U.S. customs screening for international travelers arriving at U.S. airports. It ‘s run by a different agency, U.S. Customs and Border Protection. A five-year membership costs $ 100. While more comprehensive, the program has requirements that are more rigorous and include a recommendation and an interview .

Which program is right for you ? The decision comes down to convenience at the airport versus the harass and cost to apply. Consider Global Entry if you plan to travel afield much and you live near a center for the command consultation ( more on that late ). If you don ’ t live near a Global Entry center, don ’ t have a passport and rarely travel abroad, TSA PreCheck is the better option. here ‘s a close look at the programs and some tips to help choose between them.

Nerdy tip:

Because of a backup in processing Global Entry applications, the renewal grace period has increased from six to 24 months for anyone who applies to renew before their current membership expires. Travelers arriving in the U.S. during this grace period don’t need to show any special documents to use Global Entry.

How TSA PreCheck works

When you apply for TSA PreCheck, you ‘ll have to pass a backdrop determine that verifies you as a low-risk traveler. Once you ’ re approved, the government will issue you a “ Known Traveler Number, ” or KTN, which you ‘ll need to include when making airline reservations. If you add it to a frequent circular account, it will mechanically be applied to all your reservations with that airline in the future. When using a KTN, you ’ re identical likely — but not guaranteed — to get PreCheck condition for your flights. You ’ ll see a PreCheck indicator on your board pass, whether paper or electronic. eligibility is besides embedded in the bar code of the board elapse. PreCheck condition gives you access to security lanes with lighter screening : You can leave your belt and shoes on, your laptop can stay in its case, and you don ’ t have to take liquids and gels out of your carry-on. Most of the time, that means a agile line. As of September 2021, 96 % of PreCheck passengers waited less than five minutes in agate line, according to the TSA.

Nerdy tip:

The TSA recommends that travelers who fly three times a year or more apply for a program that gets them access to expedited lanes.

Programs offering PreCheck status

TSA PreCheck: $85

It costs $ 85 to apply, and the membership lasts for five years. Some credit cards and elect frequent fly programs reimburse your lotion fee. After the initial lotion fee, PreCheck renewal only costs $ 70 if completed on-line. Some locomotion credit cards will help offset this cost equally well. This program has one benefit : access to TSA PreCheck lanes. Those lanes are available at 200-plus airports and through 80 airlines. » Learn more : How to add TSA PreCheck to your airline ticket

Global Entry: $100 (includes TSA PreCheck)

It costs $ 100 to apply, and the membership lasts for five years. Some credit cards and elite frequent fly programs reimburse your application tip. This program refers to the Known Traveler Number as PASSID, but the count is used the like means. global Entry includes TSA PreCheck and its benefits but besides gives you expedited U.S. customs screening when traveling internationally. Upon returning to the U.S., you can use an airport booth that should be far faster than traditional customs inspection lines. ball-shaped Entry besides includes expedite process at farming borders with Mexico and Canada. The TSA offers an faq for both programs.

Hassle vs. benefits

For frequent travelers, Global Entry is probably preferable because it offers extra benefits when leaving the U.S. even if you ’ re paying the application fee yourself, the add benefits of Global Entry cost just $ 15 extra, or $ 3 a year. besides, you don ’ t have to be a U.S. citizen to get Global Entry. U.S. lawful permanent wave residents, mexican nationals and citizens of Argentina, India, Colombia, United Kingdom, Germany, Panama, Singapore, South Korea, Switzerland and Taiwan are eligible for membership. The downside ? Applying for Global Entry is more of a harass than TSA PreCheck. here ’ south why :

  • passport : You must already have a valid recommendation to apply for Global Entry. Getting a recommendation comes with its own costs and paperwork. Learn more about Global Entry ‘s specific eligibility requirements .
  • interview : Both programs require you to visit an registration center for fingerprinting and an ID discipline. But Global Entry besides requires an interview, and handiness might be weeks away .
  • registration locations : There are fewer places to apply for Global Entry — largely at major airports, U.S. Customs and Border Protection offices and some destine registration centers. By contrast, TSA PreCheck has far more registration locations — over 380 as of September 2021. You can walk in during commercial enterprise hours or schedule an appointment .

Important considerations for both programs

Privacy

For any trust traveler program, a potential drawback is supplying data about yourself to the government, including fingerprints and a photograph. Giving up that personal information is an individual decision.

Children

Children ages 12 and younger can accompany an pornographic with TSA PreCheck or Global Entry through the quicker airport security lines without having their own PreCheck clearance. however, ball-shaped entrance does n’t allow children to go through expedited customs screening without their own registration in the program.

Nonrefundable fees

The application fees for both programs are nonrefundable, even if your application is denied.

Traveling with others

A practical circumstance with speedier security and customs lanes is your traveling companions. If they do n’t have the lapp status, you may find yourself waiting for a while on the other side of the security screening area for your kin or friends.

How to apply

If you decide PreCheck or Global Entry is right for you, here are the on-line forms to get started : These application sites guide you through the process, avail you find an registration center and list the documents to bring.

Nerdy tip:

Do you have an upcoming trip or long layover at an airport that offers Global Entry interviews? That could be an ideal time to schedule an interview without making a special trip to a far-flung enrollment center. Or at many airports, you could use Enrollment on Arrival when returning to the U.S. from an international trip to finish the interview without an appointment.

Credit cards that reimburse application fees

Some recognition and charge cards reimburse the application fee for entrust traveler programs when you charge it to the wag, mitigating the wag ‘s annual fee. here ‘s a sampling of cards offering a argument accredit for application fees : additionally, some credit card and travel loyalty programs will let you use change of location credits or rewards points to pay for the application tip. American Express has its own list of cards that can help you pay for trust traveler programs.

Other security programs for travelers

For $ 50, or half the price of Global Entry, you ‘ll get the equivalent of Global Entry privileges for entering Canada. The badly news : An interview is needed, and it must take place at a border-crossing facility. So it makes common sense to apply lone if you live near the canadian border or will be traveling through and can coordinate the interview with your locomotion plans. A NEXUS membership lasts for five years, and memberships for children under 18 years of age are free. This border-crossing course of study with Mexico offers similar benefits to NEXUS, but costs $ 122.25 for five years. registration centers are only on the U.S. southern edge. clean is a prescreening broadcast administered by a private ship’s company. It uses biometrics, such as fingermark and iris scans, to confirm your identity at a booth. You must still go through physical security system screenings at participating airports, but you can bypass the identification check and get straight to the conveyer belt belt and security scanners. As of October 2021, Clear is available at more than 50 airports, stadiums and other venues nationally. however, if you want clear ‘s airport security benefits, you need to finish the registration process at an airport localization. authorize does n’t qualify you for the light TSA PreCheck screening. You can use clear up and PreCheck in concert, though. Clear besides lets you cut the security line at respective stadiums, such as Major League Baseball parks. This option is well more expensive at $ 179 per year. ( Remember, the government programs ’ fees cover five years. ) Delta Air Lines and United Airlines have fiscal stakes in clear and offer unblock and discounted memberships to frequent flyers. The american Express® Green Card offers up to $ 100 per year in statement credit when you use the calling card to pay for your clear membership fee. Terms apply. » Learn more : United MileagePlus members can get discounted net membership

For military personnel

TSA PreCheck status is available for release to U.S. armed forces service members, including those serving in the Coast Guard, Reserves and National Guard. frequently asked questions Is TSA PreCheck included in Global Entry ? Yes, global Entry includes TSA PreCheck in addition to expediting your reentry to the U.S. from international destinations. Global Entry besides offers faster serve when crossing the Mexican and canadian borders . How do I apply for Global Entry ? Visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection web site to start your application. After being conditionally approved, you ’ ll need to schedule an in-person interview to complete your registration . Is TSA PreCheck worth it ? If you largely travel domestically and want access to expedited security system cover, TSA PreCheck may make smell for you. If you travel internationally and desire access to faster customs screening upon reentry to the U.S., consider Global Entry, which includes TSA PreCheck, rather . How can I get global entry for complimentary ? There are many travel credit cards that offer reimbursement for the Global Entry lotion tip as a cardmember benefit. If you pay for the application tip with these cards, you ’ ll get a credit bet on for the amount ( $ 100 ) . How can I get TSA PreCheck for free ? merely like for Global Entry, many travel credit cards offer reimbursement for the TSA PreCheck lotion tip as a cardmember benefit. While you may get lucky and be randomly allowed to use the TSA PreCheck credit line, a more dependable choice is paying for your application with one of these cards and using the credit. Is TSA PreCheck included in Global Entry ? Yes, ball-shaped Entry includes TSA PreCheck in addition to expediting your reentry to the U.S. from international destinations. Global Entry besides offers faster work when crossing the Mexican and canadian borders. How do I apply for Global Entry ? Visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection web site to start your application. After being conditionally approved, you ’ ll indigence to schedule an in-person consultation to complete your registration. Is TSA PreCheck worth it ? If you largely travel domestically and want access to expedited security screen, TSA PreCheck may make sense for you. If you travel internationally and want access to faster customs screening upon reentry to the U.S., consider Global Entry, which includes TSA PreCheck, alternatively. How can I get ball-shaped entrance for rid ? There are many change of location credit cards that offer reimbursement for the Global Entry application tip as a cardmember benefit. If you pay for the application fee with these cards, you ’ ll get a recognition back for the amount ( $ 100 ). How can I get TSA PreCheck for detached ? just like for Global Entry, many travel credit cards offer reimbursement for the TSA PreCheck application fee as a cardmember benefit. While you may get golden and be randomly allowed to use the TSA PreCheck line, a more authentic option is paying for your application with one of these cards and using the credit. All data about the american Express® Green Card has been collected independently by NerdWallet. The american english Express® Green Card is no longer available through NerdWallet.

How to maximize your rewards

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