If you are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, along with citizen of about half a dozen other countries, who travel frequently to international destinations, then you must get Global Entry. For $100 (for five years), Global Entry allows you to skip immigration and customs lines and enter U.S. within seconds. It also comes with TSA PreCheck allowing you to skip security lines, avoid taking off your shoes and pulling out your liquids and laptops, and get to your gate quickly.
Usually, applying for Global Entry is an easy process – fill out an online form or at kiosks in the airport, and then appear for an interview at any CBP offices at airports listed on their website. Applications are accepted or denied within a couple of days. But getting an appointment at any airport can go in to days or even months!
However, the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) office has kicked off a new program to help travelers get Global Entry even faster. The program, which is called Enrollment on Arrival, is now available at San Francisco International (SFO), Houston Bush Intercontinental (IAH), Houston Hobby (HOU), Austin Bergstrom (AUS) and Vancouver International (YVR), and set to expand to more airports in the months to come..
Instead of waiting around for a CBP interview, if you have been conditionally approved for Global Entry, then you can finish the interview portion during a CBP primary inspection at the airport.
Upon arrival, you will be directed to a primary booth designated specifically for Enrollment on Arrival. A CBP officer will conduct both the primary processing and Global Entry interview and collect your biometrics to complete the enrollment. The traveler will then be cleared for entry into the United States and will be a Global Entry member.
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More information on Enrollment on Arrival can be found on the CBP website.