8 Lies You May Believe About GOES

Now we are all certainly savvy people, in our own way. I bet you’d have a good idea if something sounded odd, but just in case, here are 8 lies you may believe about GOES.

  1. If you have TSA Pre Check, you can pay the difference and get any of the trusted traveler programs. This is a lie. Any CBP officer will tell you that TSA and GOES are two different programs.
  2. Once you are approved, TSA will immediately have your information and you don’t need to do anything else. Oh no, once approved for GOES you are assigned a Trusted Traveler Number TTN (Passid is the technical term). With this TTN you must enter it when booking your plane tickets to ensure you receive Pre Check as often as possible.
  3. By often, don’t you mean 100%? No, as a member of GOES you are subject to random inspections; that said, you should receive Pre Check most of the time.
  4. I was told that once approved I can bring a guest when clearing customs. Sorry, not true. Everybody (even children) attempting to clear customs using the GOES Kiosks must be a member. Any attempt at bypassing this could lead to your membership being revoked.
  5. I have to renew my membership every time I update my passport. Not true, often users would find they still have time on their membership but their passport would expire soon. In cases like this, simply login to your account and add your new passport info into your account.

  6. I need to carry only my Membership Card to use all the GOES benefits. Half true! In actuality, the Global Entry and Sentri memberships only require you to present your membership card when entering the US by Car (land border crossings) or by boat (cruise ships). The Nexus membership however is the exception, in that you would need to use your card for everything related to Canada travel, but just your passport when entering the US via air travel (confused yet?)
  7. If I am denied for any reason, I will receive a refund. Not going to happen! It clearly says on the front page “Once a completed application is certified by the applicant and the non-refundable payment is successfully processed” translation, once you submit payment you are not getting it back.
  8. Once Conditionally Approved, I only have 30 days to schedule and attend an interview. Thankfully this is not true. Since there is such a high demand you’ll find that most enrollment center interviews are not scheduling until after that 30 day window. The notice just means you need to schedule something, but the interview itself can be a few months later.