Your Global Entry Lasts Longer Than You Think

As long as you follow this one rule.

Your Global Entry lets you breeze through security lines, but the pleasure can feel like a fleeting perk. After all, all good things come to an end, even your status with Global Entry. However, according to USA Today, membership actually remains valid for a full year after your expiration date — as long as you start the renewal process before that date. 

The perk comes courtesy of last year's government shutdown. Because of the backlog created by the incident, the agents that generally work on Global Entry applications were actually moved into other issues, such as the humanitarian crisis along the United States' southern border. To alleviate the bottleneck and the long waiting time associated with new applications, Global Entry is getting more lenient.

Just remember to renew your Global Entry status before it expires. You have up to a year before the due date to start the process, which affords travelers with expedited processes at U.S. Customs and domestic security. Membership costs $100 for five years.

Currently, renewals and applications are taking up to 90 days to complete, according to Customs and Border Patrol. Most of the time, applications are completed within 15 days, but up to 35% of people are waiting up to three months. Some travelers that are renewing will also have to undergo an in-person interview, like first-time applicants are required to do.

If you're looking for some of the perks that come with Global Entry but can't stomach the possibility of waiting, TSA PreCheck applications aren't affected and are completed within five to seven days, a spokesperson for the TSA told USA Today. PreCheck costs $85 and also lasts for five years. The main difference between the two services is international travel: if you travel mainly within the United States, TSA PreCheck should be sufficient. International travelers opt for Global Entry for its access to shortcuts at Customs.