For the first time, travelers interested in joining an expedited screening program that would allow them to bypass customs inspection lines when returning from overseas will have a chance to interview for the right at Pittsburgh International Airport.
The airport will be the site for interviews under the Global Entry Trusted Traveler Program on Nov. 4-6. In the past, local travelers interested in joining the program overseen by U.S. Customs and Border Protection were required to travel to other airports to do the interviews. The closest ones were in Philadelphia or Washington, D.C.
Under the Global Entry Program, passengers arriving from overseas are permitted to use automated kiosks at certain airports to bypass customs and border protection inspection lines and go directly to baggage claim and the airport exit.
To get into the program, a traveler must fill out an application and undergo a rigorous background check and interview. The application fee is $100.
JoAnn Jenny, an airport spokeswoman, said having the interviews locally is a boost for the airport. She said there is a lot of interest in the program because those who are accepted also can also take advantage of the Transportation Security Administration pre-check program that allows for expedited screening at the security checkpoint.
Nonetheless, local travelers who are accepted into the global entry program can't use it to bypass customs inspection lines in returning to Pittsburgh from Paris. The reason is that the airport has yet to receive the automated kiosk needed by travelers. Ms. Jenny said the airport is on a waiting list for one.
Mark Belko: email@example.com or 412-263-1262.