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2 days ago the Department of Homeland Security announced that NY residents would no longer be eligible for Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, and FAST.
If you haven’t yet been approved, you will receive a refund of your application fee. Current Global Entry members won’t lose their status, but they won’t be able to renew.
Global Entry is a program that has saved me countless hours and allowed me to make connections that would otherwise be impossible. I wrote about these programs here.
The Mobile Passport app is a good alternative to Global Entry for skipping the line when entering the US, but it’s not always available and it’s not offered at as many airports as Global Entry. Plus if you want the app to remember your data you’ll need to pay for the premium version, which isn’t covered by credit cards as Global Entry is.
Global Entry includes TSA PreCheck, another truly invaluable program for travelers. NY residents can still apply for TSA PreCheck without Global Entry.
Today, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that his state will sue the federal government over the Global Entry ban. He says that the only reason for the ban is to score political points and compared the ban to extortion from the Bridgegate and Ukraine scandals.
The federal government argues that more than a dozen states have Green Light Laws that allow undocumented immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses. However only NY has passed a law restricting the federal government from accessing DMV records, and that’s why NY is being singled out here. Those records include DUI and other information that would preclude someone from being accepted into the Global Entry program.
The federal government says that if other states block access to their DMV records that they will also be removed from Global Entry. New Jersey recently passed a Green Light Law similar to New York’s that will restrict federal government access to DMV records, but those are not yet in effect.
If you live in NJ you should apply for Global Entry now and schedule your interview as quickly as possible before you lose your opportunity to join the program.
You can get Global Entry (including PreCheck) or PreCheck by itself for free with cards like:
- The Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business
- The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card
- Chase Sapphire Reserve Card
- Chase IHG Premier Card
- Chase Southwest Performance Business Credit Card
- Chase United Club Card
- Chase United Club Business Card
- The Business Platinum Card® from American Express (including on free secondary cards!)
- AMEX Platinum Consumer Card (including on free secondary cards!)
- Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card
- Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card
- Delta SkyMiles Platinum Card
- Delta SkyMiles Reserve Card
- Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express®Card
- Citi AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard
- Citi Prestige
In a cooler political environment, a compromise should have been able to be reached. After all, other states provide DMV records to the federal government without indicating the driver’s legal status.
But it seems like both sides are trying to score political points, which means the only losers are New York residents. And perhaps New Jersey residents as well unless cooler heads, or the courts, prevail.
What are your thoughts on these recent developments?