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TSA Reopening Preclearance Program to Foreign Airports



The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced the agencies would invite new airports to participate in the Preclearance program for the first time since 2016.

Foreign international airports must host operations to the United States, have a suitable facility for Preclearance processing and be prepared to share costs with the U.S. Government to be eligible for the program.

Interested airports may apply for Preclearance by submitting an application through the CBP website, but they will be required to coordinate closely to reach bilateral agreements between the U.S. and the host country.

Preclearance is a partnership through which governments authorize CBP to station personnel at airports to complete customs, immigration and agriculture inspections of travelers before they board flights bound for America.

“Preclearance is an excellent passenger facilitation program that complements our rigorous U.S. standards and strengthens global security through the development of key international partnerships,” TSA Deputy Executive Assistant Administrator Melanie Harvey said.

“This program is a win-win, allowing travelers to experience a streamlined approach that saves them time and frustration while reducing the burden on our domestic system,” Harvey continued.

Precleared travelers bypass CBP and TSA security inspections upon arrival in the U.S, saving valuable time as they proceed to connecting flights or their destination.

To establish Preclearance, host governments and airport operators must also implement security standards and protocols determined by the TSA. To date, CBP, TSA and their foreign partners have established 16 Preclearance airports in six countries.

“Preclearance strengthens our partnerships abroad and provides benefits to passengers, airports, governments, and airlines,” CBP Executive Assistant Commissioner William Ferrara said. “Those looking to apply will find that the process is more transparent than ever before. Over the past 70 years, Preclearance has achieved great success and we’re excited to offer this unique opportunity to our partners abroad.”

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