Global Entry Processing Times Are Surging, Here’s What to Know

US Customs and Border Protection is expecting a record number of applications.

Liz Hafalia/The San Francisco Chronicle/Hearst Collection/Getty Images
Liz Hafalia/The San Francisco Chronicle/Hearst Collection/Getty Images
Liz Hafalia/The San Francisco Chronicle/Hearst Collection/Getty Images

Enrolling in the Global Entry program will surely speed up your customs experience at the airport, but you must be ready to patiently wait for approval before you can celebrate.

According to US Customs and Border Protection, processing times for the Global Entry program have been on the rise, and it can currently take up to 11 months to get approved and enrolled, the Wall Street Journal reports.

If you are an international traveler, Global Entry can significantly improve your airport experience. In addition to providing TSA PreCheck benefits, it also speeds up the passport control process if you arrive in the US from abroad, allowing you to access dedicated lanes at customs.

Now, however, it might take some time before you get to enjoy such benefits. According to the WSJ, in 2020 the program temporarily shut down amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which led to a huge backlog of applications when it reopened. Add to that the fact that a record number of people applied since then, and also that each application is vetted very carefully with a deep background check, and the result is a surge in processing times. This fiscal year only, according to the US Customs and Border Protection, the agency is on track to receive more than 4 million applications, which is an extra 1.05 million compared to last fiscal year.

Reportedly, processing times for new applications are now an average of four to six months, but they can be as long as 11 months. Some customers, however, are saying that applications have even taken more than one year to process, the WSJ reports.

For now, US Customs and Border Protection cannot forecast a completion date for any specific application and, according to officials, the process cannot be expedited in any way.

For more information on Global Entry and for updates on anticipated processing times, you can visit this website.

Looking for more travel tips?

Whether you need help sneaking weed onto a plane, finding an airport where you can sign up for PreCheck without an appointment, or making sure you’re getting everything you’re entitled to when your flight is canceled, we’ve got you covered. Keep reading for up-to-date travel hacks and all the travel news you need to help you plan your next big adventure.Want more Thrillist? Follow us on InstagramTikTokTwitterFacebookPinterest, and YouTube.

Serena Tara is a Staff Writer on the News team at Thrillist. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.


Mad Mex’s New Menu Item Is Inspired by a Popular Mexican Street Food

mad mex chicken al pastor

Mexican restaurant chain Mad Mex has dropped a new protein, and it’s one of the most popular street foods in Mexico.

Enter, Chicken Al Pastor. It’s traditionally made with pork and grilled on a spinning rotisserie with a pineapple sitting a top, but Mad Mex has put its own spin on it, serving chicken bathed in an Al Pastor marinade with a touch of juicy pineapple.

You can order the protein-packed filling in your favourite burrito, bowl, quesadilla, nachos, or in a taco.

As always, these things are here for a good time, not a long time. Pop into your local Mad Mex restaurant, order delivery or through the Mad Mex app today.

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