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Immigration Officers Questioning All Global Entry Users at SFO Today

Immigration Officers Questioning All Global Entry Users at SFO Today

Old Sep 11, 19, 8:13 pm
  #1  
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Immigration Officers Questioning All Global Entry Users at SFO Today

I arrived at SFO today at around 2:30. Worst crowds I ever saw at immigration, backed up to the end of the moving platform on the A side. Yes, there were a lot of people off of the Emirates flight (<redacted by moderator>), but I have arrived at the same time in the past and never saw such long lines.

Got to Global Entry, was happy to see no line for the machines - just walk right up. After getting my white slip of paper, I realized that I then had to go wait on a long line to turn in my slip of paper. Only it wasn't just turning in paper - every person received a series of questions from the immigration official. At least in my case, it wasn't discernibly different from the questions asked when you enter without Global Entry. With two officers handling the Global Entry people, it took about 15 minutes to get through.

Seems to defeat the whole purpose of a "trusted traveler" program.

Last edited by TWA884; Sep 11, 19 at 8:34 pm Reason: FT Rule 12.2 - Expressions of prejudice or discrimination are not permitted (race, nationality, disability, etc.)
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Old Sep 13, 19, 3:30 am
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Originally Posted by BigFlyer View Post
I arrived at SFO today at around 2:30. Worst crowds I ever saw at immigration, backed up to the end of the moving platform on the A side. Yes, there were a lot of people off of the Emirates flight (<redacted by moderator>), but I have arrived at the same time in the past and never saw such long lines.

Got to Global Entry, was happy to see no line for the machines - just walk right up. After getting my white slip of paper, I realized that I then had to go wait on a long line to turn in my slip of paper. Only it wasn't just turning in paper - every person received a series of questions from the immigration official. At least in my case, it wasn't discernibly different from the questions asked when you enter without Global Entry. With two officers handling the Global Entry people, it took about 15 minutes to get through.

Seems to defeat the whole purpose of a "trusted traveler" program.
There's periodic random questioning/searches to ensure compliance. All trusted traveler/vetted importer type programs have this built in.
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Old Sep 13, 19, 4:19 am
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Originally Posted by flyerCO View Post
There's periodic random questioning/searches to ensure compliance. All trusted traveler/vetted importer type programs have this built in.
It's standard now at JFK T7 and T8 based on recent experiences at both
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Old Sep 13, 19, 7:40 am
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The GE FAQ expressly disclose that this may occur.

It may be random or may be meant to look random. E.g., they have some information in hand, but not enough to identify the traveler, so everyone gets a bit of an encounter.
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Old Sep 13, 19, 8:07 am
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I (well, we including Mrs. pa3lsvt) had the same in MIA after returning from the DR a few years back. POTUS and AF1 happened to be at the field that day, so the whole process was very chaotic.

I get the 3rd degree EVERY TIME I use NEXUS/GE at YUL Preclearance. One CBP officer even told me I didn't look like my passport picture. I just looked at him and stroked my beard (not present in my passport photo). My next instinct was to ask, "Well, did my fingerprints match at the kiosk, Columbo?"

Fortunately, it didn't get to that point, because I know my mouth would have gotten me sent to secondary. It's only YUL; YYZ, YVR, YOW, YYC - they just pretty much wave me through after "Bringing anything back today?"
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Old Sep 13, 19, 9:56 am
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Originally Posted by pa3lsvt View Post
I (well, we including Mrs. pa3lsvt) had the same in MIA...
It's happened to me every single time that I used the GE kiosks at MIA. Very different than my experiences at LAX, JFK, PHL, CLT and YYZ, where I don't recall ever being questioned other than some follow up questions when I declared food items.
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Old Sep 13, 19, 2:22 pm
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Restore deleted content following move to the Policy Debate forum

When I arrived at SFO on Wednesday it wasn't random - they were taking their time with each Global Entry person (I suppose the randomness could have been that some days they question everyone and other days they don't.)

The infuriating thing is that in most of the EU countries EU citizens just stick their passport in the automatic border gate, smile for the camera, and they're done. This is without going through the PITA vetting process required for Global Entry.

- In fact, Americans are now eligible to use the automatic passport gates at UK airports - meaning that Americans do not have to speak with an immigration officer not enter the UK, but have to speak to one to enter America.
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Last edited by TWA884; Sep 16, 19 at 11:59 am Reason: Restore deleted content after move to the Policy Debate forum
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Old Sep 14, 19, 8:47 am
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Originally Posted by BigFlyer View Post
When I arrived at SFO on Wednesday it wasn't random - they were taking their time with each Global Entry person (I suppose the randomness could have been that some days they question everyone and other days they don't.)

<redacted>.
They do. The only time I had it, was at YVR last year. There were reports on here that day from all over US. It was clear that day had been picked.
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Old Sep 14, 19, 8:48 am
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Originally Posted by Markie View Post
It's standard now at JFK T7 and T8 based on recent experiences at both
I go through T8 regularly with no issues. Just went through three weeks ago.
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Old Sep 15, 19, 12:55 am
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For us, those questioning happens at US airport POE ALL THE TIME. Where did you go, why? how long did you stay? what do you do? I am not saying it is a race issue but I don't think those kinda questionings are asked to white caucasians, We are just an Asian American. At the buffalo border, I handed over my US passport card but I was still asked what my citizenship was.

To avoid waste of time or any trouble, I just very reluctantly but politely answer each questions. It is like guilty of something unless i sound innocent.

Never am I ever asked such questions when I travel to any other countries. So I guess it is WELCOME TO NOT YOUR AMERICA to these CBP agents I guess.
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Last edited by TWA884; Sep 16, 19 at 11:53 am Reason: Restore deleted content after move to the Policy Debate forum
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Old Sep 15, 19, 1:30 am
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Not (yet) experienced that at SFO or other entry point.
When signing up, had no expectation on how few or many questions i'd be asked when re-entering the U.S. each time.
Just that it'd probably be a shorter line than everyone else is in =) (airline and diplomats aside).
So, i'm OK with the randomness of this security procedure.
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Old Sep 15, 19, 8:22 am
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God forbid we do our job and inspect people coming into the U.S., GE members or not...

"You're still subject to inspection...." is part of my interview process for GE applications.

And this is happening a little more often nationwide wide. Still not common, but it's a thing now....Get used to it.
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Old Sep 16, 19, 11:37 am
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Originally Posted by maninblack View Post
God forbid we do our job and inspect people coming into the U.S., GE members or not...

"You're still subject to inspection...." is part of my interview process for GE applications.

And this is happening a little more often nationwide wide. Still not common, but it's a thing now....Get used to it.
Inspecting for what? With the biometric identification at the kiosk, you have rock solid proof of identity. Given that the person is then identified as a US citizen with the right to enter, what are the immigration concerns at that point that justify asking questions?

(moderator: fine to move this to the policy debate forum, but I've always wanted the answer to this question and from maninblack's post it seems that he would know the answer.)
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Old Sep 16, 19, 11:48 am
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Originally Posted by BigFlyer View Post
(moderator: fine to move this to the policy debate forum, but I've always wanted the answer to this question and from maninblack's post it seems that he would know the answer.)
Done.
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Old Sep 16, 19, 12:08 pm
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As with Pre-check, you don't get your money back if you get removed from the program or if the current "surge' continues and gets worse and suddenly GE and Pre-Check have no actual value.
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