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#268284 10-Mar-2020 09:53
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I asked the last government in 2017 about whether NZ would consider joining Global Entry - for those of you who fly semi-regularly to the United States, you'll understand what the program is and why it would be a boon for anyone who ever has to deal with the absolute clusterfork that is CBP and TSA. Back then, the response was "nope". I've recently enquired again and gotten another response out of the current minister which I've enclosed below.

 

Sadly, the slightly faster screening at Houston remains the best we're going to get. It seems based on the fact the answer hasn't deviated in three years that NZ will never get access to Trusted Traveller programs, and we'll just have to suck it up and be the "odd ones out" stuck in the slow queue.

 

Thank you for your email to me dated 4 February 2020 expressing your interest in the United States trusted traveller programme and inquiring about the possibility of New Zealand taking steps, as Australia has, to obtain access to trusted traveller programs when visiting the United States.

Like my predecessors, Hon Kris Faafoi and Hon Meka Whaitiri, I do appreciate your interest in this matter and welcome your feedback as a regular traveller to the United States. You can be assured that the New Zealand Government is very committed to improving the travel experience for inbound and outbound travellers.

I note your comment that Hon Meka Whaitiri had previously advised you that that the New Zealand Customs Service (Customs) had looked into New Zealand citizens travelling to the United States accessing the Global Entry Program, and determined that there would be limited uptake which would not justify the costs of joining the program.

Your recent correspondence asks if, as Minister of Customs, I would reconsider this position and investigate whether there is potentially a renewed appetite for New Zealand obtaining access to these programs. My Customs officials have discussed this matter with their American counterparts in the last fortnight, and it is clear that the transaction costs of negotiating the agreement and then maintaining the requisite security protocols on behalf of United States Customs and Border Protection, would still be too high. At this time, there is still not a compelling case for Customs to negotiate the necessary international agreements with United States Customs and Border Protection.

You may find it useful to know that Customs, together with other New Zealand border agencies, has a very broad suite of seamless travel initiatives for all travellers arriving or departing New Zealand. Some of these initiatives include; the removal of departure cards, expansion of the New Zealand Customs eGate programme to a larger group of countries, ongoing facilitation of trans-Tasman cruise ship travel, and the digital arrival card trial. Customs also continues to review and assess new ways in which we can expedite New Zealander's travel across the world.


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  #2435486 10-Mar-2020 09:53
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Allow me to introduce you folks to our new travel community: TravelTalk NZ.

 

We hope to see you there!

 





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  #2435497 10-Mar-2020 10:07
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Hardly surprising. A good source I asked about this around a year ago indicated we were looking well into the tens of millions on setup and ongoing costs for this and that it would simply never happen.

 

Plenty of those who travel to the US frequently have an APEC card anyway which is pretty easy to get in NZ and speeds up the arrival process in a similar way. 

 

 

 

 


 
 
 
 


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  #2435829 10-Mar-2020 17:13
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sbiddle:

 

Plenty of those who travel to the US frequently have an APEC card anyway which is pretty easy to get in NZ and speeds up the arrival process in a similar way. 

 

 

if they let you through the correct screening lane.

 

I hold an A2 visa and the still forced me to go through with the rest of the people from the air nz flight. got to the passport officer and he asked why i was in this line.

 

some real muppets in the TSA and CBP.




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  #2436155 11-Mar-2020 09:52
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sbiddle:

 

Hardly surprising. A good source I asked about this around a year ago indicated we were looking well into the tens of millions on setup and ongoing costs for this and that it would simply never happen.

 

 

It's unclear to me why Customs and Immigration continue to spend money on initiatives to make it easier and faster for US citizens to enter and depart NZ while requiring no reciprocity and extracting minimal if any concessions out of CBP. The Houston expedited clearance is a good start (nothing like other arriving flights being confused by the presence of three lanes - "US Citizens/LPRs", "Aliens", "Air New Zealand Passengers from Auckland") but still not enough.

 

It's also unclear to me why NZ insists it's too expensive, but Australia has Global Entry eligibility. NZ and Australia have similar security (domestic notwithstanding), both have electronic passenger manifesting (indeed it's necessary for the IAH expedited clearance), NZ has the model for performing necessary security checks on citizen/resident applicants (see ABTC) so I cannot see what the costs could be, unless CBP requires extra fees to be paid.

 

Jase2985:

 

if they let you through the correct screening lane.

 

I hold an A2 visa and the still forced me to go through with the rest of the people from the air nz flight. got to the passport officer and he asked why i was in this line.

 

some real muppets in the TSA and CBP.

 

 

Yup. I've been "coaxed" back into the regular lanes before too. ABTC is next to useless in the US.


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