I have written many times about how much I love Global Entry. Not only does it allow me to breeze through immigration and customs upon return to the US but it also allows the holder to be enrolled in the Trusted Traveler Program (for things like TSA PreCheck that allows you to zip through TSA).
When my wife and I first got Global Entry, they did not allow children to be enrolled in the program (I believe the minimum age was 14). Since our children were well under that age, we asked what we would do when traveling as a family. They told us that it varied at each airport and it wasn’t a guarantee, but normally we would just have to go to the front of the line to go through the regular line. I didn’t like the sound of that but there was nothing else to do.
Fast forward about a year and the CBP changed the program to allow any age to enroll. That was great news – except we found out about it on the way home from an international trip. 🙁 That meant I stayed in line with the kids and my wife went through with her Global Entry to start collecting bags (we figured I had the harder job with three little ones after a 8 hour flight:).
So, we went ahead and applied for Global Entry for our kids (it costs $100 a year but we were able to get it for free with the reimbursement from our American Express Platinum cards). It was free for us because of those cards (you get a one-time card reimbursement but we each had a card and I had additional cards that we were able to use). That is a great benefit of the American Express Platinum card and one we were very thankful for.
However, I read today over at Mommy Points that it is possible to get Global Entry for kids for free! That is without using an American Express card! Pretty cool stuff, so head on over to her site to read the post and see if this will work out for you. If you even have one international trip planned in the next 5 years, this is incredibly worth it!
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