Global Entry and TSE Pre-Check

My Global Entry status expired earlier this year, and given we had no idea when we would get vaccinated at the beginning of the year to be safe enough to get on a plane, I didn’t jump to renew it before the expiry date. When we finally did become fully vaccinated in May, Chris scheduled my Global Entry interview (part of the application process, even with renewals, unfortunately), but there were long waits and the earliest we could get was the last week of June. The plus side is that I didn’t need to go to the airport to do the interview in person, and instead, I was able to do a Zoom interview with a Customs Border Patrol officer. I did this on Sunday, and it lasted about 10 minutes with the usual routine questions (verify identity, employment, previous countries traveled to, etc.). The officer said I was approved, and it would go into effect immediately. I asked him if it would be as immediate as applying to my domestic flight this Thursday, and he said yes.

So I checked into my flight this morning, and when the AA app generated my boarding passes, the TSA pre-check symbol did not appear. Red flag. I thought he said this was immediately in effect? I double checked my TSA pre-check number, checked the website to ensure I was definitely re-approved. Everything looked good. So I called AA and asked them to check for me. After 15 minutes on hold after verifying my full name (no name changes, right?), date of birth, and Global Entry number, they got me back on the line and asked me to delete the current boarding passes and regenerate them after refreshing the app. Phew — thankfully this worked, and my TSE pre-check was reinstated. I would have been really pissed if I had gotten this interview done and was approved, and somehow there was a “waiting period” for it actually go into effect.

The experience of going through a regular non-priority, non-pre-check line in May was NOT fun. Chris kept making fun of me and calling me a pleb because he was able to get his Global Entry renewed in time for that trip. I never want to go through that again. Who wants to voluntarily take off their shoes and separate all their electronics and toiletry bag…?!

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