Global Entry re-opening to UK citizens. The official announcement!

Since its unforeseen closure in December 2013, UK citizens have been waiting and waiting for the reciprocal agreements needed for their eligibility for Global Entry. I speculated a few months ago that it would be returning – lo and behold it has come!

Global Entry logo

Well at the World Travel Market in London yesterday, it was announced that on 3rd December 2015, British passport holders can apply once again.

The CBP's press release is as follows:

CBP is excited to expand our partnership with the United Kingdom on this flagship program by offering Global Entry to U.K. citizens,” said Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske. “Through this cooperation, CBP’s Global Entry and the UK Border Force Registered Traveller programs will enhance security and better facilitate travel between our two countries.”

In May 2011, CBP launched a pilot program with the U.K. to allow a limited number of U.K. citizens to participate in Global Entry as the first phase of a trusted traveler arrangement. As part of the pilot, more than 1,400 UK citizens enrolled in Global Entry. Nearly five million Britons visited the United States in Fiscal Year 2015 and more than 125,000 of those visitors traveled to the United States four or more times.

To register for Global Entry, U.K. citizens will apply through the U.K. Home Office website and pay a £42 processing fee. If the applicant passes the U.K. vetting, they will receive a “UK Access Code,” which applicants will enter when applying for Global Entry through CBP’s Global Online Enrollment System (GOES). The non-refundable application fee for a five-year Global Entry membership is $100 and applications must be made online. Once the application is approved, a CBP officer will conduct a scheduled interview with the applicant and then make a final eligibility determination.

In its previous incarnation, Brits had a slightly clumsy procedure of digging out a “promotional code” and acquiring an ACRO police certificate which currently cost a minimum of £45. It isn't clear yet what the new Home Office check entails but I cannot imagine them reinventing the wheel considering the ACRO certificates are currently required for other visa classes for the US. My guess would be they do the same checks, but give you the digital access code rather than mailing the certificate to you.

So until we can start dreaming of US pre-clearance within the UK, you can place a reminder in your calendar for 3rd December to apply for Global Entry – we've all been waiting for it!

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