India has been welcomed to the International Expedited Traveller Initiative, which is a Global Entry Programme part of the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) programme. It allows expedited immigration clearance for low-risk travellers arriving in the US.
In order to be classified as a low-risk traveller, citizens must sign-up at Global Online Enrolment System (GOES). A US$100 non-refundable fee is required with each completed application. On receiving a conditional approval, applicants are instructed to schedule an appointment for an interview at a Global Entry Enrolment Centre.
The process involves thorough background checks. Membership to the programme is valid for five years.
American President Donald Trump has included India in the Global Entry Programme with the thought that it will boost business and educational ties between citizens of both countries.
Citizens of Colombia, Germany, Mexico, Panama, Singapore, South Korea, Switzerland and the United Kingdom are also eligible for the Global Entry Programme. Canadian citizens and residents are eligible for Global Entry benefits through membership in the NEXUS programme.
On landing at select US airports, programme members needn’t queue up at manned immigration counters. They’re directed to automated Global Entry kiosks where they present their passports to be read by a machine, have their fingerprints scanned and complete a customs declaration. They’re presented with a receipt before being directed to baggage claim.
The select US airports that offer the facility include New York, Newark, Washington, Austin, Dallas, Houston, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Jose, Las Vegas, Miami and Seattle.