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Downtown Global Entry Office Sees Fast Start


May 1, 2013



© Houston Airport System
Houston Mayor Annise Parker not only spoke at the center's opening but also used the opportunity to enroll herself into Global Entry.
A downtown enrollment center for the expedited travel program, Global Entry, is getting off to a busy start. The office, which is operated by U.S. Customs & Border Protection (CBP), is already expanding its hours of operation due to heavy public demand.

The office, which is located in the Houston City Hall Visitorís Center, was initially opened two days per week, serving applicants on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. But with the appointment calendar quickly reaching capacity, CBP officers have already expanded its availability to include Thursday appointments as well.

Passengers looking to enroll in the program begin by submitting an online Global Entry application. Once that step is completed, the applicant is brought into an enrollment center for a one-on-one interview with a CBP officer, where additional questions can be addressed and a program overview can be provided.

The downtown location provides potential enrollees to the Global Entry program a new option to complete the enrollment process, with two additional centers available to them within George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH).

Global Entry allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers upon arrival in the United States. Once enrolled in the program, participating passengers can use the self-serve kiosks in clearing the U.S. Customs declaration process, rather than waiting in line to speak with a CBP officer.

Houstonís flagship airport routinely ranks as one of the top three airports in the nation for both program enrollment and kiosk usage. The number of passengers approved to participate in the program increased by more than 100 percent during the first quarter of 2013, as compared to the totals recorded during the same time period last year. Meanwhile kiosk usage increased by more than 50 percent. The opening of the downtown enrollment center is an effort to take those numbers to an even higher level in the future. 
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