Do Children Have to Sign-Up for Global Entry?

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Million Mile Secrets reader, JC, commented:

Why do you have to sign-up underage kids for Global Entry?  In my experience, when I book a flight with my children, they always get TSA PreCheck.

Great question!

Every traveler must have Global Entry to use the benefits.  Just like children must travel on their own passport, they also need their own Global Entry card. Global Entry can be a tremendous time saver!  Because you can avoid long lines at US Customs and Immigration when you return to the US from an international trip.  With Global Entry approval, you’re almost guaranteed TSA PreCheck.

But as reader JC suggests, children under 13 years old can go through the expedited security line with a parent or guardian that has TSA PreCheck.

Global Entry For Children
Children Under 12 Years Old Can Join a Parent or Guardian With TSA PreCheck on the Expedited Security Line! But All Travelers Must Have Global Entry to Speed Through US Customs and Immigration When Returning to the US!

I’ll let y’all know why I prefer Global Entry.  And share which credit cards can save you money on the application fee!

Global Entry Approval Gets You TSA PreCheck!

Link:   Apply for Global Entry

Link:   Everything to Know About TSA PreCheck

Link:   How to Fill Out the Global Entry Application

I recommend signing-up for Global Entry instead of TSA PreCheck.

Because when you have Global Entry, you’ll also be approved for TSA PreCheck on most flights.  This means you and children under 12 on the same reservation can pass through security quickly in 200+ airports if you’re traveling on a participating airline!

The main benefit of Global Entry is avoiding the long lines at US Customs & Immigration when you return to the US from overseas!

Global Entry For Children
Long Lines Are Not Something to Look Forward to After a Vacation Overseas! So Why Not Skip the Line With Global Entry?

For folks just looking to skip the security lines in the US, TSA PreCheck is a great option.  You can pass through security without taking off your shoes, belt, or light jacket.  And you also don’t have to remove your laptop and liquids from your bag!

Keep in mind, both Global Entry and TSA PreCheck require an in-person interview.  And it can be more difficult to find available interview slots for Global Entry because there are fewer enrollment centers.  I suggest checking if you live near a center that accepts walk-in appointments.

8 Credit Cards Can Get You Global Entry or TSA PreCheck for Free!

 Link:   You Can Save a Friend or Family Member $100 With This Card Perk!

You can get a $100 Global Entry fee credit or $85 TSA PreCheck fee credit when you pay with these cards:

Note:   The credit only works with each card for Global Entry OR TSA PreCheck, not both.

Remember, you can use the credit for anyone, not just yourself!  Team member Meghan recently saved $500 on Global Entry application fees by paying with certain credit cards.

Bottom Line

All travelers (even infants and young children) must be enrolled in Global Entry to use the benefits of the program, like skipping the long lines at US Customs and Immigration when you return to the US.

But with TSA PreCheck, children under 13 years old can go through the expedited security line with a parent or guardian who has “TSA PRE” on their boarding pass.

I recommend signing-up for Global Entry instead of TSA PreCheck.

  Because when you have Global Entry, you’ll also usually be approved for TSA PreCheck on most flights.

Be sure to pay your Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee with a credit card that gets you a statement credit.  And remember, you can use the credit for anyone, not just yourself!

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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