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On 23 June 2019 the Global Entry enrollment center at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) was suddenly closed down when the facility’s CBP staff were redeployed to deal with as a nonexistent National Emergency on the border between the United States and Mexico.
The closure of the office at the Tom Bradley Terminal left Angelenos with Long Beach as the nearest location which offers Global Entry processing (not ideal for a large proportion of the city’s residents) or the option of “enrollment on arrival” if they were traveling and had conditional approval for their application.
Unsurprisingly a rather large backlog of applications rapidly built up and stories of 6-8 month wait times for interviews often appeared in the local press, but now there’s finally some good news to share.
US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has announced that the Global Entry Enrolment center at LAX will reopen this month at reduced capacity with no date given for when we can expect the facility to be operating at full capacity.
Donald R. Kusser, CBP Port Director of Los Angeles International Airport is quoted as saying:
“CBP personnel are working diligently in relocating and reassigning the necessary resources to ensure the prompt resumption to full capacity”
“It is paramount to CBP to improve the customer service experience as Global Entry continues to attract thousands of new applicants.”
As the LAX CBP facility reopens it will be able to handle up to 150 daily interviews as compared to the 250 daily interviews it can handle when it’s fully operational.
What this all means is that, with immediate effect, Global Entry applicants who have received their conditional approval can schedule an appointment for an interview for 11 November 2019 onwards.
What is Global Entry?
Global Entry is the US CBP program that is open to US citizens, legal residents of the US and citizens of select nations around the world. The program gives members expedited entry into the United States via kiosks stationed at major points of entry and removes the need for passengers to stand in seemingly endless immigration lines as they wait to enter the country.
How To Get Global Entry For Free
Global Entry costs $100 for a 5-year membership but a number of high-end credit cards offer a Global Entry credit as part of the benefits package that they offer.
Credit cards like the Platinum Card from American Express and the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card are just two examples of cards that, when used to pay for Global Entry, will rebate the cost of the application to your credit card account.
Finally a respite for Angelenos! I got my first Global Entry membership at the CBP station at LAX and found the staff there to be unexpectedly polite and friendly so it’s great to see this much-needed facility reopening and getting back up to speed – here’s hoping it gets up to full capacity as soon as possible.
Featured image: Global Entry kiosks at LAX courtesy of US CBP