Traveling overseas can be exhausting, and there is nothing worse than waiting in a crazy long line to get through customs when arriving back in the United States. Thankfully, there is a loop hole that accelerates many of these procedures.
After a preliminary approval, you will schedule an in-person interview which may be a hassle because it sometimes takes several months to get an appointment. Emily recommends doing a walk-in appointment:
All Global entry offices take a few walk-in appointments each day. Arrive before they open or before lunch (Emily arrived around 10:45am).
Upon arrival, tell the person at the door that you are there as a walk-in for a Global Entry appointment. They will have you write down your name and tell you that you aren’t guaranteed to be seen that day but will try to be worked in.
Bring something to occupy yourself for a few hours. You may be called upon soon after arrival but come in with the idea that you will likely have to camp out for a while.
Emily was called for an appointment within 2 minutes of putting her name on the signup sheet. Her boyfriend who tried a few months later was called within 15 minutes.
From what she could tell (and judging by her own experience), appointments take around 5 minutes but are scheduled for 15, so there is a solid chance they will find room for you in a reasonable amount of time.
Make sure to bring your valid passport and one other form of identification (such as a driver’s license or ID card with your current address) to the interview.
Your wait experience might vary based on where you live, but the ease and benefits of having Global Entry are well worth the effort. Upon returning from the Caribbean recently (and waiting in a claustrophobic customs line for over an hour), I noticed the Global Entry kiosks that people were literally breezing through and not having to wait in line with the rest of us. I only travel internationally once a year, but you can bet that I will not leave the country again without this perk.
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