Comparing TSA PreCheck to Global Entry

by Allie Moore

Feb 16, 2019

© United | PetSafe

Tips / Travel

You’ve seen the signs at the airport and watched with envy as other travelers sped through security and/or passport control, but what exactly are these programs so many travelers use to breeze in and out of airports, and how do they differ?


TSA PreCheck and Global Entry are two different programs with different membership application processes, but they can do wonders for the frequent traveler.


Available in more than 200 airports in the United States, TSA’s PreCheck program is a pre-screening process that allows you to bypass the long lines at the standard security checkpoints in airports. PreCheck members don’t need to unpack their luggage, or remove electronics or shoes when going through security. Travelers must apply at one of the designated airports in the United States where they undergo a security screening and background check. The fee for the program is $85, which covers five years of membership.


Global Entry applies to travelers coming back into the United States from abroad and is operated by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol in 50 U.S. airports. The membership also lasts five years with a fee of $100 and can be granted after a background check followed by an in-person interview. If you are approved for Global Entry, the approval also includes membership for TSA PreCheck, which allows travelers to knock out two membership approvals in one swoop.


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