Streamline Your International Travel with A Little Planning

Man holding passport and boarding pass at airline check-in counter

Summer means travel, and the season is well underway.  Travel can be exciting and stressful at the same time. Here are some tips to help keep your plans running smoothly, especially as you pass through airports and borders.

Trusted Traveler Programs

The department of Homeland Security offers a variety of programs to help you “zip” through airport security lines with minimal disruption.  Global Entry covers both U.S. and international travel. If you are planning to sign up or renew, here are some important considerations.

Global Entry

Due to the partial government shutdown in December and January, there is a substantial backlog of applications and renewals for all Trusted Traveler Programs (“TTP”). Applicants for Global Entry should expect significant delays in application processing times and limited appointment availability at TTP enrollment centers.

Initial Applications

  • All first time Global Entry applicants will need to create a TTP account, pay the $100 non-refundable fee and complete the online application, regardless of age. Once the application is conditionally accepted, schedule an in-person interview at a Global Entry Enrollment Center.
  • If you are not able to get an appointment any time soon but are traveling internationally, conditionally approved Global Entry Members should seek to complete their Global Entry Interviews without an appointment upon arrival from an international flight at any of the 49 airports participating in CBP’s Enrollment on Arrival


You may apply for renewal one year prior to expiration of your current Global Entry status.

  • Log into your Trusted Traveler Programs account. Complete the “BLUE” renewal application under Program Membership and pay the $100 renewal fee.
  • Once the application is filled out, check your TTP account periodically for updates on what actions are necessary to complete the renewal process. You may be approved, conditionally approved, or rejected.
  • If you are conditionally approved, you will need to schedule an interview at your local Trusted Traveler Program enrollment center.
  • If you are approved, you will not need to schedule an interview and your new card will be mailed to you.

Other programs include: TSA Pre-Check for US Travel, Clear (used at select domestic airports and sports arenas), and Nexus for streamlined US-Canada border crossings.


Be sure your passport is current, and allow 6-8 weeks processing time for renewal or first-time applications.  You can expedite your passport application or renewal for an additional $60 fee.

As a general rule, it is wise to make sure that your passport is valid up to 6 months after your return. Some international destinations require 6 months validity upon returning to the US.


Always double check if the country of your destination requires a visa. If you are unsure and have questions about how to obtain a specific visa, is a great resource.

Please contact me or a member of your JDJ team for assistance regarding any of these programs.