On July 3, 2017, the United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that it had expanded Global Entry eligibility to citizens of India [PDF version]. India is the eleventh country whose citizens are eligible to enroll in Global Entry, a CBP Trusted Traveler Program. The list stands as follows:
- Republic of Korea (South Korea);
- Switzerland; and
- United Kingdom.
The CBP explains that the Global Entry Program is currently available at 53 U.S. airports and 15 Preclearance locations. It streamlines the international arrival process for enrollees by allowing them to use an automated Global Entry kiosk to complete admission into the United States in lieu of CBP inspection lines. Canadian citizens and residents enrolled in NEXUS may also use the Global Entry kiosks.
The following information from the CBP website explains the process for seeking enrollment in Global Entry for citizens of India [PDF version].
- Apply online at https://goes-app.cbp.dhs.gov/goes/jsp/login.jsp and submit the $100 application fee.1
- After completing the Global Entry application with CBP, the applicant must submit required information, along with an application fee, in the Passport Seva Portal at www.passportindia.gov.in for a background check in India. Furthermore, Indian applicants must schedule an in-person interview at the appropriate Passport Seva Kendra/Passport Seva Laghu Kendra (PSK/PSLK) office, depending on their residential jurisdiction in India. Interviews at the PSK/PSLK are conducted by appointment only. For this reason, applicants not presently living in India should apply for Global Entry prior to their next trip to India in order to ensure that the appointment at the PSK/PSLK can be completed during their next visit.
- After the application is reviewed, the applicant will receive a message in his or her GOES account with instructions to schedule an interview at one of the Global Entry Enrollment Centers. Global Entry Enrollment Centers are mostly located within the United States at ports of entry and in certain designated CBP facilities (there is one Global Entry Enrollment Center in Qatar and multiple Enrollment Centers in Canada). You may find the list of Global Entry Enrollment Centers on the CBP website.
- At a Global Entry Enrollment Center, a CBP official will conduct an interview prior to making a final eligibility determination. The CBP will also take a photo of the applicant and collect fingerprints. Applicants must bring valid passport(s) and one other valid form of identification to the interview. A lawful permanent resident (LPR) applicant must present his or her permanent resident card (“Green Card”).
In addition to other benefits, such as being able to use the Global Entry kiosks, once enrolled in Global Entry, an Indian citizen will be able to participate in the TSA Precheck expedited screening program. Like all persons enrolled in Global Entry, Indian citizens must have a valid passport and valid visa. Global Entry members who are not U.S. citizens or LPRs must maintain updated visa information with the CBP. Such Indian citizens are required to notify the CBP in person at a Global Entry Enrollment Center regarding information on new visas or new petitions for work visas.
It is worth noting that Global Entry agreements between the United States and other countries are reciprocal. Accordingly, U.S. citizens may also enroll in the Global Entry program for travel to other participating countries. The policies and procedures may vary from country to country.
The CBP's expansion of Global Entry to India is an exciting development for many travelers to and from the United States and India. The CBP website contains up-to-date information about the status of the Global Entry Program as well as country-specific information for applicants. Individuals who have general questions about immigration applications and petitions, their immigration status, or issues such as the Global Entry Program should consult with an experienced immigration attorney for detailed information.