Security and efficiency are not mutually exclusive. Rather, they are equally important and equally achievable objectives. Expanding trusted traveler programs, which adhere to rigorous pre-screening processes, can help alleviate long security lines while enhancing national security by freeing more resources to focus on unknown travelers.

Quick Facts

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) launched TSA PreCheck to expedite screening for low-risk travelers. The move to an intelligence-driven, risk-based initiative helped TSA move away from a one-size-fits-all model. This allowed TSA to maintain high security standards while making the process less burdensome for qualified travelers. TSA PreCheck is now available at more than 200 U.S. airports and about 5 million frequent travelers are enrolled in the program.

Global Entry is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) program that allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers upon arrival in the United States. Global Entry is a win-win for both the U.S. and participating countries—travelers enjoy an efficient, secure entry process, and the information sharing and cooperation involved are good for diplomatic relations and security. Global Entry is currently operational at 59 airports.

The CBP Preclearance program thoroughly vets travelers in approved international airports that meet CBP’s rigorous security standards prior to arrival in the U.S. This helps reduce the workload for customs agents at U.S. ports of entry, allowing agents to focus resources on higher-risk targets. Currently, there are 15 Preclearance locations in 6 countries, and that number is expected to go. 

U.S. Travel is continually working with our federal partners to identify ways to increase domestic and international participation in trusted traveler programs. 

 

TSA Report: Transforming Security at Airports

Recommendations

Promote Trusted Traveler Programs

Increasing resources to market TSA PreCheck and Global Entry would help enroll a larger segment of air traveler, effectively shrinking the pool of unknown travelers. The more travelers enrolled, the shorter wait times will be at airport security and the safer travelers will be as a whole.

Streamline the TSA PreCheck application process

Simplifying the two-step online and in-person enrollment process by working with the private sector to collect biometric information via kiosks or mobile platforms would increase application accessibility and effectively motivate millions to enroll in TSA PreCheck.

Expand Global Entry and Preclearance

Congress and the CBP should significantly expand the successful Global Entry and Preclearance programs that expedite screening for pre-approved, low-risk international travelers. By removing known, low-risk travelers from the regular screening process, expanding these programs enables CBP to focus resources on potentially riskier unknown travelers.

Research, News and Commentary on Trusted Traveler Programs

Aligning Travel Priorities with Capitol Hill

February 16, 2018

In this week’s message, we address travel industry matters related to the recently enacted federal budget deal, the release of President Trump’s fiscal 2019 budget proposal and his much-anticipated infrastructure plan

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NTTW 2018: How to Celebrate “Travel Then and Now”

February 16, 2018

Here are some tips on how to make National Travel and Tourism Week 2018 the best one yet for your area’s travel community. 

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Roger Dow Commentary

International Visitors Are Crucial to President Trump’s Priorities

February 07, 2018

The hospitality industry has played a key role in launching the Visit U.S. coalition, which aims to work with the administration to reverse a recent decline in international visitation to America. 

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CBP Officer processes incoming passenger

Commerce Department Numbers Confirm Drop in International Visitor Spending Last Year

February 07, 2018

Following Tuesday’s release from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the Visit U.S. Coalition reiterated its commitment to work with the Trump administration on reversing the decline. 

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Research Round-Up: Behind Roaring Economy, Effects of Decline in International Visitation to U.S. Begin to Show

February 02, 2018

Here are some of January 2018’s most compelling findings from the U.S. Travel research team.

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Fixing Our Airports, Growing International Travel Are Crucial to Trump’s SOTU Priorities

January 31, 2018

The travel industry welcomes the president’s attention on the crucial topics of infrastructure, trade and national security—and knows exactly how to help him achieve his goals in these areas. 

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