New Cost Of Speed: How The Global Entry 20% Price Hike Affects You And Your Credit Card Perks

The federal government is raising the price of Global Entry. Effective October 1, 2024, the price goes up 20% from $100 to $120.

  • People who go through background checks for this ‘Trusted Traveler’ program, and give up biometrics in advance, get expedited customs and immigration.

  • This also extends to security checkpoints, since Global Entry provides TSA PreCheck as well.

On the one hand it’s strange for the government to charge you to investigate you and take your biometrics. After all, if they believe this improves security it’s mission-enhancing for them. However they are supposed to recoup the cost of the program since it’s viewed as a service (other taxpayers aren’t supposed to subsidize the ‘privilege’ you receive).

Price For NEXUS and Kids Applications Changing, Too

The cost of NEXUS, which is the Canadian border program (and which comes with both Global Entry and PreCheck), is being increased from $50 to $120 as well.

Meanwhile children under 18 with a parent or legal guardian already in Global Entry or applying at the same time will be free. Currently their application has the same cost as adults.

How Will Credit Card Fee Reimbursements Respond?

It will be interesting to see what this price change will mean for credit card benefits. Cards positioning themselves as premium travel products generally offer statement credits for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. (Chase, which has the U.S. Air Canada co-brand, generally offers Nexus as an option as well.) We’ll have to wait to see how this cost increase flows through to banks and how they respond.

They have agreements in place, but in general:

  • Some products might absorb an increase
  • While others might position the benefit as “up to $100 to spend on TSA PreCheck or Global Entry”

One thing that banks like about the benefit is that it’s not annual. Once you’re approved for either benefit it’s going to last 5 years. You’ll need to re-apply and pay a fee again in year four. They’re playing a spreadsheet game, offering a benefit with a $100 headline while sticking a much lower annual cost into the spreadsheet.

Some even play the game of offering the benefit every 5 years rather than every 4 years, since the benefit lasts that long.

  • That’s where you know the issuer is playing a spreadsheet game rather than a customer game. Almost no customer wants to wait until their benefit expires to re-apply since, with Global Entry, you want to avoid having to schedule an interview – and if you do need one but you you get a conditional re-approval before expiration your current status gets an extension.

  • With breakage, even covering a $20 cost increase, they’re not going to incur an extra $2 a year per cardmember – but issuers do make decisions on the basis of a couple of dollars. For instance, many cards have eliminated insurance-type benefits like trip delay coverage.

A $100 credit still covers PreCheck, and for anyone with regular international travel Global Entry is worth an extra $20 out of pocket in any case considering that it does last five years.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

More articles by Gary Leff »

Comments

  1. It’s not very often when I see a price get increased and I think “well, that’s reasonable”. This is one of those instances. Even a few dollars more would still be reasonable for a 5 year stretch.

  2. Unfortunate but I guess not a surprise. I just renewed mine, filled out a form, paid the money, got an approval in a few hours and the card (only useful at land borders) followed. The only glitch in the program is that you can change your mailing address, but not address of permanent record, online. Why they make that complicated I don’t know.

  3. @ Gary — So, basically, adults without children will be susidizing children. Lovely.

  4. For someone that travels to the USA four or five times a year from the UK worth every penny when I see the queues that others face

  5. Adults without children are failures. So I’m glad they are subsidizing children (also known as contributing productively to society.)

  6. @ High class professional — Yeah, we need more people. 8.1 billion isn’t enough.

  7. @Gene and @ Adam-

    Exactly how difficult, expensive, and time consuming is that background check on a 9 year old? Before the minors were subsidizing adults.

    Sheesh. Get over it.

  8. Global entry is a facial recognition scam. Yes you get through faster, but now that they are close to a database size they are happy with, iyou don’t get the quick “No to all” questionnaire, hand the printed ticket to a customs agent and keep walking experience. Instead, you get to stand in line and still get grilled by an agent behind plexiglass.

    Forget global entry, just use mobile passport for free which is often times just as fast but free.

  9. I am surprised that margins on premium credit cards is that low.

    The only parents I support are those who adopt.

  10. Is this extra $20 to improve the abysmal service they provide in terms of timely action, impossible-to-schedule interviews and general indifference to service, or is it just a price hike for more of the same?

  11. Still think it should be called US Entry because I haven’t had it work anywhere except the US.

  12. The price increase shouldn’t affect me because I already paid. It was so long ago that I’d have to research it to figure out when, but they are in no hurry to get to an interview.

    It’s still not clear to me what they are trying to accomplish. With TSA Pre, I understand that there’s a risk letting people on an airplane. But this is to let me into my own country. And they have to let me in. The routine questions for people who don’t have this don’t tell them much, and if they want to make sure that it’s really me, Global Entry wouldn’t stop somebody who isn’t. So why charge so much to investigate somebody who has been investigated for TSA Pre who is going to be let into the country no matter what? Standard screening happens before luggage pickup so it’s not as if it protects much.

  13. Smaybe viewfromthewin is a scam. Not approving an honest comment from someone who travels international every month and works in the airline industry.

    Just trying to protect their revenue stream

  14. I’m not as lucky as drrichard. Mine was expiring in Jan 2024 so I was proactive and reapplied and paid my $100 on October 4, 2023 and to this day 6 months later the website says pending. I talked to an agent in the Global Entry office at LAX and she said my application most likely got lost in cyberspace. Whatever that means. She said she couldn’t approve me but wished she could…..go figure! Needless to say I just returned from Australia a few days ago and had no problem passing through the Global Entry lane. Apparently they are giving a 2 year extension to those who reapplied before their’s expired because of high volume of applications.
    Does anyone have any suggestions for me as they aren’t responding to my inquiries. Thanks

  15. I’m in the same boat as Laurie S. Mine was also due to expire in Jan 2024. I paid my $100 in mid-Sept 2023, and I also have “pending” on the website. I’ve had no trouble entering this year, so the extension would appear to have been implemented.
    But what a pathetic way to run the program when I read of other people being confirmed for reapplication within days.
    I too would like to have peace of mind about this so that every entry isn’t tinged with anxiety.

  16. Regarding minors. My daughter and SIL just drove 400 miles to have interviews with our 5 yo grandson and 2 yo granddaughter. There own Global Entries don’t expire for 3 years. The “interviews” apparently involved saying “hi” to the older one and “Isn’t she cute” about the younger one. For the record, of course she is! But a total waste of the time and miles driven as well as the 2 interview slots that others could have used.

  17. This was welcome news. Just paid to enroll my eldest daughter using one of the three credits from cards in my wallet, and this change saved my wife and I from paying for our other three children.

    Yeah, people who don’t like kids (dinosaurs), those who are dogmatic about adoption (different dinosaur, same extinction mechanism), and those who are worried about an extra $1 subsidizing my clan, who will in turn pay taxes/generate economic activity to subsidize your lonely, childless days in the nursing home watching ancient Matlock episodes…haha, knock yourself out with the self-imposed natural selection, we’ll read about you in books. Oh, wait, no we won’t – because we won’t care. Your lineage died out, womp womp.

    He who has the most descendants in the land…wins.

  18. Considering nearly every card that covers these charges increased annual fees by $100 or more, costing them an extra $20 every 5 years should’t even be a concern. Of course, shareholders run things. So expect an additional $50 more per year to cover the every-five-year $20 additional cost. Chase, Amex, Citi, etc…they will not do the customer-focused thing.

  19. @gene you’re damn right we need more children. The population within the next 100 years is going to hit cap around 10 billion and then plummet 40% in the 40-50 years after that. There’s only a handful of countries that are above replacement birthrates at this point (that’s 2.0 kids per woman). Even China overcorrected and in the next 30-50 years is going to be facing a HUGE burden as the majority of their population will be older than working age. Considering that pretty much every economic system in the world (capitalism, socialism, doesn’t matter) works by successive generations having a larger population than previous ones. That’s how the ‘social safety nets’ work. You should educate yourself more on this before spouting off.

    https://www.birthgap.org

  20. I had my GE revoked in 2018 after a customs violation for the firm I was employed by due to a China based manufacturer’s mistake labeled product incorrectly and I have found mobile passport to be good enough coming home. The best value of GE was coming back over the border from Tijuana where I was sent for dental work.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *