Completely digital passports may be something travelers can look forward to in the near future, but for now, we have biometric passports at certain airports to get us quickly in and out of the country without having to wait for hours in line. Although only a few airports in the US support biometrics for those coming into the US from abroad, there is an alternative application you can download that’s also accepted and available in about 28 airports and 4 cruise terminals nationwide called Mobile Passport.
Mobile Passport is a free app that allows you to breeze through passport control without having to sign up for anything or going through an interview, as you would if you signed up for Global Entry. All you have to do is download the app to your Apple or Android device, take a photo of yourself, fill out your passport information and answer a few simple questions each time you enter into the US. The questions are the same that you would find on the blue Customs Declaration paper such as the following: are you bringing in more than $10,000 cash into the US, if you’re carrying seeds/pants/fruit/poultry, or if you were around livestock/farm during your trip. The app
The Mobile Passport app allows you to save more than one passport, a feature ideal for those who are traveling with a spouse and/or children and saves that information for a maximum of 4 hours. If you want your information saved longer, or if you don’t want to take a photo and enter your passport information each time you enter into the US, then you can purchase the PLUS version for $14.99 USD per year. The subscription also comes with a free 7-day trial, so if you want to cancel after the 7-day period, you can. After you will out all the information and take your photo, you will get a QR code to be scanned when you get to the CBP officer at passport control. Sometimes you’ll be asked to present your passport, but more often than not, the CBP officer lets you pass through in a matter of seconds.
Mobile Passport has its own line separate from Global Entry and is as fast (if not faster) as Global Entry. The app “does not share your personal data with third parties nor is your personal data saved on a virtual system”, so you won’t have to worry about security issues or concerns. Once you try it, you’ll be hooked. To download the app, click here for iOS and here for Android.