Many of our friends were surprised that we did not have global entry and to be honest, so am I. Not living in close proximity to an airport where you could schedule an interview seemed to be my main obstacle. Yes, we do go to the metro DC area and could schedule one at either Washington Dulles or National Airport but I just never did. Everything that I had heard about these airports was that they had long waits for interviews – months and months long.
I was speaking with my stepson earlier this month and he was flying to another location to get his Global Entry rather than his home airport. That gave me an idea and I wondered why I hadn’t thought of it before. Why not just go to another airport. As we go to northern Michigan once a year I knew I would be driving past Detroit Metropolitan Airport on my drive. I called the contact telephone number at Detroit and they told me that I had to first fill out the application online, a background check would be conducted and that would take about 3 weeks. Once that was completed, I could call them and set up an interview which could take place about a week later.
Feeling gleeful with this news, I quickly filled out the Global Entry application and my husband did his as well. Imagine my complete surprise when we were notified four days later that we could go ahead and make the appointment for our 15 minute interview.
We sat down at the kitchen table today to look at our calendar and see when a good date would be to set up our interview. As I went back online to find the photo number of the office at the airport, I happened to scroll a little further down the screen. I found that they had a NEXUS office in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan which was a lot closer to us. I called them up and they gave us an appointment for the next day! This isn’t even an airport but is by an international bridge into Canada. From filling out the application to scheduling the appointment, it was been nine days.
I know that most of you are not going to be near an international bridge but if you live near one, see if they can give you an interview faster than at the airport.
We did drive up to Sault Ste. Marie, went into the office and had our “interview”. It was extremely easy and I am kicking myself that I didn’t do it earlier.
At the Chicago Seminars that I attended in October, I was sitting at breakfast with Greg, known as the Frequent Miler who writes a great blog on our hobby. I was telling him about our experience at the bridge at the Soo. He wondered if they had one in the Buffalo area as he was going to help his niece get her Global Entry. I looked it up and quickly found that there were two – one in Buffalo and one in Niagara. To be honest, these locations are not where you would expect them to be. Most people go here to find locations but I found the other locations by going here.
If you decide to get Global Entry, which also gives you TSA Pre check, look beyond airports particularly if you can get to a state that is bordering another country – it just might be faster.