TSA PreCheck vs. Global Entry
The TSA PreCheck program and the Global Entry program are used by travelers to expedite the security check process before their flights. With a TSA PreCheck screening or Global Entry membership, flight passengers gain access to faster security checkpoints at participating airports. TSA PreCheck status allows members to get to their flight gates without having to remove personal items or submit to body scans. In any case, TSA PreCheck enrollment and Global Entry membership feature distinguishing characteristics that travelers must know before completing their Global Entry or TSA PreCheck applications. To find out more about the similarities and differences between both expedited traveling options, read the sections outlined below, which include:
- Global Entry and TSA PreCheck costs and details.
- How to apply for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry.
- Where Global Entry and TSA PreCheck programs are accepted.
Global Entry and TSA PreCheck Costs and Details
Both TSA PreCheck approval and Global Entry program enrollment allow travelers to pass through airport security checkpoints faster than they would at standard TSA lines. The specific TSA PreCheck program determines the details of this expedited process, though. If you pass the TSA PreCheck requirements for enrollment, you are allowed access to TSA fast pass lanes, so long as you provide your Known Traveler Number when booking fights. TSA PreCheck screenings allow passengers to keep all of their personal items on them (i.e. no removal of shoes, laptops, gels and liquids, and other items typically prohibited at standard security screenings). Additionally, TSA PreCheck enrollment allows members to skip the body scanner used by airline security and instead pass through a simple metal detector.
TSA pre approved PreCheck privileges are also available to Global Entry members. Global Entry program participants also have an expedited path through security. However, unlike TSA PreCheck status passengers, Global Entry travelers are also allowed to skip security lines at Customs and Border Protection when re-entering the country.
Note: Both TSA PreCheck enrollment and Global Entry membership are valid for five years following approval.
How to Apply for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry
If unsure whether to apply for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry, consider all aspects of the Global Entry and TSA PreCheck approval procedures before making a decision. Both Global Entry and TSA PreCheck programs require interested participants to complete an online application. Once approved, TSA PreCheck status holders must also complete a required in-person TSA PreCheck interview. The Global Entry program also mandates this interview, which must be conducted by a U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer. Meanwhile, TSA PreCheck interviews are conducted at TSA PreCheck enrollment centers by authorized agents. Both travel incentives also require interested travel applicants to submit photographs, identifying documents and fingerprints. TSA PreCheck costs and Global Entry fees vary.
Where Global Entry and TSA PreCheck Programs Are Accepted
TSA fast pass lanes are present at more than 160 airports in the United States, while Global Entry is valid at more than 50 airports worldwide. Currently, the TSA PreCheck program is accepted and employed by the following U.S. airlines:
- Air Canada
- Alaska Airlines
- Allegiant Airlines
- American Airlines
- Cape Air
- Delta Air Lines
- Etihad Airways
- Hawaiian Airlines
- JetBlue Airways
- Seaborne Airlines
- Southwest Airlines
- Sun Country
- United Airlines
- Virgin America