When entering the U.S. you need to answer customers questions correctly. If you have any food with you, say so, because if you’re chosen for secondary screening and caught you could be fined — and lose Global Entry privileges if you have them. I’ve warned readers about this before, it’s one of the ways people are losing Global Entry.
Crystal Tadlock was given an apple as a snack on her Delta flight from Paris prior to arrival. She stuck it in her carry on bag figuring she’d eat it on her connecting flight to Denver.
Going through customs she was selected for secondary screening. An agent “pulled out the apple in the plastic bag with Delta’s logo on it.” She asked if she could just “throw it away or eat it,” but it was too late.
“He had asked me if my trip to France was expensive and I said, ‘yeah.’ I didn’t really get why he was asking that question, and then he said ‘It’s about to get a lot more expensive after I charge you $500,'” said Tadlock to Fox 31.
Tadlock said the innocent mistake could end up costing her bigger than just the $500 fine – she could also lose her Global Entry Status, which allows pre-approved, low-risk travelers to have expedited clearance into the U.S.
Tadlock feels Delta shouldn’t have handed the apples out on the flight, or should have reminded customers that they can’t bring undeclared apples into the country. She says she plans to fight the fine in court. Good luck with that.
Delta for their part just says they “encourage our customers to follow U.S. Customs and Border Protection protocols.” Customs and Border Protection says “all agriculture items must be declared.”