TSA and CBP Announce Preclearance Program for Foreign Travelers

A traveler speaks with a CBP Vancouver preclearance officer to complete his processing. (cbp.gov)

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced on Wednesday they will allow international airports to participate in a preclearance travel program.

In a preclearance partnership, governments authorize CBP to station personnel at airports which will assist in completing customs, immigration, and agriculture inspections of travelers before they board flights United States bound. Upon arrival in the United States, travelers who have been precleared can bypass CBP and TSA security inspections and can proceed to connecting flights or their destination, thereby saving valuable time.

Host governments and airport operators must also implement security standards and protocols determined by the TSA which are comparable to those of the United States, and enable passengers to deplane into sterile areas of airports in the United States.

“Government and airport cooperation throughout the process is integral to the success of initiating new preclearance operations” said TSA Mitigation Operations Director Karen Steer. “Both CBP and TSA are committed to working with foreign partners to advance preclearance operations.”

To date, CBP, TSA and their foreign partners have established 16 Preclearance airports in six countries.