Before moving to Mongolia, I signed up for Global Entry which comes with TSA PreCheck meaning you don’t have to take off your shoes and belt, remove your laptop, and if you’re one of those people who still separates his liquids, you don’t have to do that either. I paid $100 for the application and scheduled the interview which included straightforward questions like the flattering one, “Why have you been to so many countries?
Global Entry allows you to skip the Customs line that continues to grow longer and slower and proceed to the automated kiosk where you swipe your passport, declare any goods, then be on your way. Gone are the days of anxiety and fumbling for answers when the immigration asks you seemingly innocent questions like “What countries did you visit?” that nevertheless illicit a shaky response, “uhhh, Mexico?”
Registering for Global Entry as I was exiting the country indefinitely wasn’t the most well thought out plan but the benefit does remain valid for five years. Nevertheless, I recommend that every traveler sign up because using it along with PreCheck a few times more than pays for the nominal application fee. Be warned, if you have two misdemeanors on your resume, you won’t be approved. I also must note that Global Entry still won’t save you the headache of bringing along your Jambox.