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Sentri or Global Traveler

punchdrunk monkey

Well-Known Member
I was looking to upgrading my Passport to Sentri to help getting back from Baja easier. While I was on the website, I noticed the Global Traveler option. GT looks like it works in airports. But I'm not sure if it helps with car crossings.

Does anyone have any input on either one?
 

Soylent_Green

Well-Known Member
i have SENTRI and added Global Entry privileges to my SENTRI account.
Global Entry also works at SENTRI border crossings and Canadian border NEXUS

I do business with a guy who recently got Global Entry and not SENTRI because according to him it was "easier" and faster. And he uses it almost exclusively at SENTRI points.

Not sure current wait times from application to interview in SENTRI, but it used to be 4 + months.

When crossing at SENTRI points of entry, the vehicle needs to be registered beforehand. It took me an average of 2 months just to add vehicles to my existing SENTRI account. So, if you go the Global Entry route you will need to add your Mexico bound vehicles. CBP recently made that easier though - you used to have to bring your car to be inspected beforehand, and now I believe it is not required. A registered vehicle is not exclusive to a specific SENTRI driver - if you had SENTRI, you could also drive my SENTRI registered vehicle.

SENTRI/Global Entry is great at the border, but realize it is for you and not your passengers. Unless they have it, they have to walk across (easy at Otay cuz walking line is next to SENTRI line). There is no SENTRI (or even Ready) line at Tecate crossing. You can't be towing in SENTRI, and tailgate of a truck must be up and plate visible if you have a dirt bike in the back.

Not sure how deep the background is with Global Entry - assume pretty similar to SENTRI. I know a guy who got denied SENTRI due to a minor pot possession from late 70s or early 80s. The guy didnt even think it was on his record - he remembered just spending the night in jail, that his boss "took care of it", and forgot about the incident for 30+ years. DUIs also get you disqualified from SENTRI.

If you do any international travel, Global Entry at airports is a big time saver. Again, if your travel companions dont have it, you will either wait in line with all the mortals or cross fast and meet them at the airport bar hahah.

And if you travel domestically, your Global Entry and SENTRI allows you to register and use TSA pre-check. If you are traveling with people without TSA pre-check, sometimes (but not always) they too will get to use the pre-check line.

I also believe Mexican auto insurers give discounts to SENTRI registered vehicles.

It is time consuming and kind of a pain to get SENTRI, but worth it.
 
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