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Global Entry and TSA Precheck® are must-haves in every frequent traveler's toolkit, saving you valuable time at the airport. Even better, you can get this perk at no cost with the right credit card.
Global Entry is a TSA-sponsored program that allows you to bypass long customs lines when entering the U.S. The program also includes TSA Precheck, which lets you breeze through airport security. Approval into the program, which is valid for five years, is contingent on a background check and in-person interview.
The best cards that provide a Global Entry/TSA Precheck credit are premium travel cards that reward you for spending on dining and travel or loyalty to an airline or hotel chain. Here are our top picks for cards that offer reimbursement for Global Entry and TSA Precheck — with our full list of cards and further explanation of each program at the bottom of the page.
Best credit cards with Global Entry or TSA Precheck reimbursement
|Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card||Dining and travel||$550|
|Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card||Everyday spending||$95|
|The Platinum Card® from American Express||Luxury travel perks||$550|
|IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card||Free hotel stays||$0 Intro for the First Year, then $89|
|Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card||Luxury hotel perks||$450|
|Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card||Existing Bank of America customers||$95||Read Review|
|Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®||American Airlines benefits||$450|
|United℠ Explorer Card||United Airlines benefits||$0 Intro for the First Year, then $95|
Why trust us
To make choosing the right card easier, we've looked at credit cards reviewed on ValuePenguin as well as cards on major issuer sites to compile a list of the best rewards credit cards available right now. Our recommendations are based on the additional value you can earn with the cards — including the rewards value, cost of ownership and value of benefits such as travel and purchase protections, lounge membership and airline companion passes. Our choices are not influenced by our advertisers.
Best credit card for dining and travel
The Chase Sapphire Reserve®
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year. Through December 31, 2021, gas station & grocery store purchases will also count towards earning your Travel Credit
- 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
- Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $900 toward travel
- With Pay Yourself BackSM, your points are worth 50% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
- Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more
The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is often heralded as the best travel rewards card — and with good reason. In addition to the up to $100 Global Entry/TSA Precheck application credit, it comes with a $300 annual travel credit, free Priority Pass™ Select membership for airport lounge access and a fantastic rewards rate: 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. Keep in mind that this card comes with a $550 annual fee, but the credits alone will take care of most of this cost.
When redeeming your points for travel through the Ultimate Rewards portal, you'll get 50% more redemption value. This means that 60,000 points are worth $900 in travel. Alternatively, you can transfer your Ultimate Rewards points at a 1:1 ratio to Chase's 14 loyalty partners.
How the benefit works
Like most of the other cards on this list, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® provides up to a $100 credit that can be applied once every four years. It can be used on either Global Entry, which costs the full $100, or TSA Precheck, which costs $85. Once you charge the application fee to your Chase Sapphire Reserve®, a statement credit for the application fee will be posted within 24 hours.
Best credit card for everyday spending
The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
17.24% - 24.49% (Variable)
- Earn 100,000 bonus miles when you spend $20,000 on purchases in the first 12 months from account opening, or still earn 50,000 miles if you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
- Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase, every day
- Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
- Receive up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
- Redeem on travel—including flights, vacation rentals, car rentals and more. Plus transfer your miles to over 15+ travel loyalty programs
- No foreign transaction fees
The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is a great choice for travelers with a lower spending profile or who don't want to shell out $550 in annual fees. Compared to the other cards on this list, the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card has better general spending rewards (2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day) and a competitive welcome bonus: Earn 100,000 bonus miles when you spend $20,000 on purchases in the first 12 months from account opening, or still earn 50,000 miles if you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
How the benefit works
The Global Entry and TSA Precheck benefit on the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is similar to what is offered by the other cards on the list: up to $100 fee reimbursement, depending on the program you choose. You're eligible for this statement credit every four years.
Submit your Global Entry or TSA Precheck application and charge the application fee to your Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card. Within two billing cycles, a credit for the purchase will appear on your statement.
Best credit card for luxury travel perks
The Platinum Card® from American Express
See Pay Over Time APR
- Earn 75,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $5,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.
- Earn 10x points on eligible purchases on your new Card at U.S. Gas Stations and U.S. Supermarkets, on up to $15,000 in combined purchases, during your first 6 months of Card Membership. That’s an additional 9 points on top of the 1 point you earn for these purchases.
- Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member and Additional Centurion Cards only.
- Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel. Starting January 1, 2021, earn 5X points on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
- 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
- Enjoy complimentary access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
- Receive complimentary benefits through American Express Travel with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts® program at over 1,100 properties . Learn More.
- Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. That’s up to $50 in statement credits semi-annually. Enrollment required.
- $550 annual fee.
- Terms Apply.
For those who have substantial travel expenses, The Platinum Card® from American Express is the best card that comes with a Global Entry or TSA Precheck credit. The card has a steep $550 annual fee, but one of the highest rewards rates on flights and hotel spending (5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and 5X Membership Rewards® points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel. Terms apply. )
And if you love airport lounges, you'll enjoy complimentary access to The American Express Global Lounge Collection, including The Centurion Lounge, Priority Pass lounges (enrollment required) and Delta Sky Clubs.
It's important to note that this card is only worth it for luxury-seeking travelers who fly frequently and spend generously. If you're looking to get a card with a Global Entry credit and don't care about luxury perks, there are cheaper options on our best picks list.
How the benefit works
Pay for the Global Entry or TSA Precheck application fee with The Platinum Card® from American Express, and a statement credit will appear on your account within eight weeks. You'll receive this credit every four years for Global Entry and every 4.5 years for TSA Precheck.
Best credit card for free hotel stays
The IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card
$0 Intro for the First Year, then $89
15.99% - 22.99% Variable
- Earn 150,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
- Enjoy a Reward Night after each account anniversary year at eligible IHG hotels worldwide. Plus, enjoy a reward night when you redeem points for any stay of 4 or more nights
- Earn up to 25 points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel
- Earn 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants. Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
- Platinum Elite status as long as you remain a Premier card member
- Global Entry or TSA Pre✓® Fee Credit of up to $100 every 4 years as reimbursement for the application fee charged to your card
- IHG Rewards Club Bonus points are redeemable at hotels such as InterContinental®, Crowne Plaza®, Kimpton®, EVEN® Hotels, Indigo® Hotels & Holiday Inn®
The IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card is ideal for frequent IHG hotel visitors when on the road. With a reasonable $0 Intro for the First Year, then $89 annual fee, you'll also enjoy travel perks such as Global Entry or TSA Precheck reimbursement.
You'll be rewarded more for general spending and non-IHG travel expenses by other cards on this list, like the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and The Platinum Card® from American Express. However, the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card can earn you complimentary hotel stays and Platinum Elite IHG status.
How the benefit works
With this card, you'll enjoy reimbursement for TSA Precheck or Global Entry once every four years. Charge the Global Entry application fee to the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card, and a statement credit will appear on your account within 24 hours of the purchase being charged to the credit card.
Best credit card for luxury hotel perks
The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card
- Earn 75,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. Plus, earn up to $200 in Statement Credits for eligible purchases at U.S. Restaurants within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
- Enjoy up to $300 in statement credits each year of Card Membership for eligible purchases at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
- Earn 6 Marriott Bonvoy points for each dollar of eligible purchases at participating Marriott Bonvoy Hotels. 3 points at U.S. restaurants and on flights booked directly with airlines. 2 points on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive 1 free Night Award every year after your Card account anniversary. Award can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 50,000 Marriott Bonvoy Points) at a participating hotel. Certain hotels have resort fees.
- Enjoy unlimited airport lounge visits when you enroll in Priority Pass™ Select membership.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $450 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card is a solid premium card for travelers who frequently stay at Marriott properties. In addition to up to a $100 credit for Global Entry application, the card will also get you up to a $300 Marriott hotel credit and a free annual hotel stay to help recover the $450 annual fee.
To enhance the value even further, The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card offers competitive rewards on travel and dining. If you're looking for travel perks in addition to free Global Entry, the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card should be on your shortlist.
How the benefit works
After paying your Global Entry or TSA Precheck application fee with the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, a statement credit will be posted to your account within eight weeks. You'll receive this credit every four years for Global Entry and every 4.5 years for TSA Precheck.
Best credit card for existing Bank of America customers
Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card
The Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card complements nicely to customers who already own checking or savings accounts with Bank of America. This card is part of the Preferred Rewards program, offering benefits including a 25% to 75% rewards bonus depending on your combined account balances.
The $95 annual fee is justifiable thanks to the Global Entry or TSA Precheck application credit and an annual $100 airline incidentals statement credit. The rewards rate is catered to everyday purchases, providing 2 points for every $1 you spend on travel and dining purchases. Plus, earn 2 points for every $1 spent on grocery store purchases – now through 12/31/21. Earn 1.5 points for every $1 you spend on all other purchases. No limit to the points you can earn and your points don't expire.
How the benefit works
You'll receive up to $100 in statement credits for either Global Entry or TSA Precheck, valid every four years with your Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card. It will take two to three weeks for this credit to hit your account.
Best credit card for American Airlines benefits
The Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®
15.99% - 24.99% (Variable)
- Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
- Admirals Club® membership for you and access for up to two guests or immediate family members traveling with you
- Earn 10,000 AAdvantage® Elite Qualifying Miles (EQMs) after you spend $40,000 in purchases within the year
- No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases
- Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases and 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases
- First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to 8 companions traveling with you on the same reservation
- The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 15.99% - 24.99%, based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi's discretion.
The Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® is one of American Airlines' luxury card offerings with a $450 annual fee. On top of the Global Entry/TSA Precheck application credit, cardholders will enjoy a complimentary Admirals Club membership — a $650 value — among free checked bags and priority access at the airport.
This card is most rewarding for American Airlines flyers, as you can jumpstart your way to elite status. However, its everyday rewards rate is meager at best, offering you the chance to Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases & 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases.
How the benefit works
To activate the Global Entry or TSA Precheck reimbursement benefit, you'll charge the application fee on your card and receive a statement credit within one to two billing cycles. This benefit is renewable every five years.
Best credit card for United Airlines benefits
The United℠ Explorer Card
$0 Intro for the First Year, then $95
16.49% to 23.49% Variable
- 40,000 bonus miles after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open. Plus, an additional 25,000 bonus miles after you spend $10,000 in the first 6 months
- $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95
- Earn 2 miles per $1 spent at restaurants, on hotel stays, and on United purchases
- Up to $100 Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® fee Credit
- 25% back on United inflight purchases
- Check your first bag for free (a savings of up to $140 per roundtrip) when you use your card to purchase your ticket
- Enjoy priority boarding privileges and visit the United Club℠ with 2 one-time passes each year for your anniversary
- Earn 2 miles per $1 spent at restaurants and eligible delivery services
Most mid-tier airline cards don't offer Global Entry or TSA Precheck reimbursement, but the United℠ Explorer Card is the sole exception. If you're a loyal United Airlines customer or fly on any Star Alliance partners, the United℠ Explorer Card is a sublime choice. Better yet, this card offers an annual fee of $0 Intro for the First Year, then $95.
You'll enjoy United-specific benefits, such as a free first checked bag and two annual United Club passes. However, if you're not a United Airlines loyalist or Star Alliance traveler, one of the general rewards cards on this list will better suit your needs.
How the benefit works
Use your United℠ Explorer Card to pay for your Global Entry or TSA Precheck application, and a $100 statement credit will be posted to your account within 24 hours. You'll receive this benefit every four years.
They say time is money — and Global Entry and TSA Precheck are two fantastic ways to save your precious time at the airport. If you're considering paying for these programs on your own, why not consider applying for a card that takes care of this fee for you? Our top picks not only offer application reimbursement but other meaningful benefits that will improve your travel experience as a whole.
What is Global Entry and TSA Precheck?
Admission to either program is good for five years and requires an in-person interview, background check and fingerprinting.
Global Entry vs. TSA Precheck: What's the difference?
Global Entry is designed for international travelers who want to avoid waiting in customs lines upon returning to the U.S. As a Global Entry member, the process for re-entering the country is simple: Go to a designated Global Entry kiosk at the airport, present your passport or permanent resident card and scan your fingerprints. You'll then be given a transaction receipt and directed toward the airport exit. The membership cost is $100 and is valid for five years and includes the TSA Precheck benefit.
U.S. citizens, U.S. lawful permanent residents and citizens from the following countries can apply for Global Entry:
- United Kingdom
- South Korea
- Mexican nationals
You're ineligible for Global Entry if you provided false or incomplete information on your application, have pending or convicted criminal charges or violations with laws in any country.
In comparison, TSA Precheck is intended to help both domestic and international travelers reduce the time they spend waiting in airport security lines. Members gain special access to an expedited security lane and go through airport security without removing their shoes, laptops, liquids, belts and light jackets. TSA Precheck membership does not include access to Global Entry when traveling internationally. To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen, a U.S. national or lawful permanent resident.
It's advisable for most travelers to select Global Entry over TSA Precheck. For an extra $15, you can enjoy expedited customs clearance. Any of the credit cards listed above will cover application credits up to $100, so Global Entry is the clear winner here.
How to use Global Entry
After you're approved as a Global Entry member, you'll be able to take advantage of the program every time you return to the U.S. for the next five years. To use the benefit and skip the customs line, all you need to do is find a Global Entry kiosk in the customs area and scan your fingerprints and passports. You'll then be asked to declare the goods and cash that you're bringing back into the country. Finally, take your receipt and show it to the CBP officer at the exit as you leave customs.
How to use TSA Precheck
The first step to using TSA Precheck is to add your Known Traveler Number (KTN) to your reservation when purchasing your ticket. This will put a TSA Precheck indicator on your boarding pass and another special indicator in the barcode. After a TSA agent scans your pass at the first checkpoint, they'll direct you toward the expedited Precheck line. You can then go through security without removing your belt, shoes, laptop, liquids or light jacket.
To use TSA Precheck, you need to be flying on an airline that participates in the program. All of the major U.S. airlines currently take part in the program, and you can check for other airlines on the TSA's list of participating airlines.
How to get Global Entry and TSA Precheck
The processes for getting Global Entry and TSA Precheck are relatively similar. Both require you to submit an online application, which should take about five minutes, and appear in person for an interview. Unless you've gotten into serious legal trouble or are the subject of a government investigation, you should have no problem getting approved for either program.
Global Entry application process
For Global Entry, the first step is to create a Trusted Traveler Programs (TTP) account. Once your account is created, log in, submit an application for Global Entry status and pay the $100 fee. After the CBP approves your application, you should set up an appointment at a Global Entry Enrollment Center — be sure to bring all valid passports and an additional form of ID.
In most cases, you've been preapproved for Global Entry if you make it to the interview phase of the application process. You can expect to be asked basic biographical questions about your criminal history, job, and travel habits at the interview. You'll also have your fingerprints taken. After this appointment, you'll likely be verified as a Global Entry member, so long as you don't have a problematic criminal record, your application information is truthful, and you've been confirmed as low risk.
Through a program called Enrollment on Arrival, you also have the option of interviewing at an airport anytime you return from a trip. You'll need your valid passport or permanent resident card and documents proving residency.
TSA Precheck application process
To become a TSA Precheck member, you need to fill out an online application, which should take roughly five minutes to complete. Next, set up an appointment at an enrollment center. Once you attend your appointment and are approved for Precheck, you can add your Known Traveler Number (KTN) to future ticket reservations and enjoy the benefits of expedited security.
Note that the appointment/interview for TSA Precheck is similar to the one for Global Entry. You'll be asked basic questions about yourself and have your fingerprints taken. If your criminal record is clean, there should be no problems. In total, the interview should take no longer than 10 to 15 minutes.
How long does it take to be approved for Global Entry and TSA Precheck?
For Global Entry, the CBP usually processes applications within six months. If you applied through the Trusted Traveler Program website, you can check the status of your application on your dashboard. If the status reads "Pending Review," your application has been received by the CBP and is being processed. Once your status is updated to "Conditionally Approved," you'll receive a notification to schedule an appointment at an enrollment center.
For TSA Precheck, the approval process takes approximately two to three weeks. Once you're preapproved, you'll go into an enrollment center for a quick background check and fingerprint scan. You'll be officially registered as a TSA Precheck member after this appointment.
Are Global Entry and TSA Precheck worth it?
Both Global Entry and TSA Precheck are useful programs, but Global Entry is the better choice if you're deciding between the two. It's only $15 more ($100 versus $85), and it gets you expedited customs clearance plus the expedited security access of TSA Precheck.
Even if your international travel is infrequent, the small premium for Global Entry will save you both time and frustration when you do travel internationally. And if you don't want to pay this fee out of pocket, consider one of the cards on this list.
If you don't want to open a credit card, or if you don't fly often, you may be debating whether skipping the customs line is worth $100. Since either benefit is good for five years, you're essentially paying $20 per year. Finally, consider the fact that you could be waiting more than two hours to get through customs on any given afternoon, especially at a busier airport.
All credit cards that come with free Global Entry or TSA Precheck
The cards listed above are the best overall credit cards that also have a Global Entry credit. However, other cards offer the Global Entry and TSA Precheck benefit that might work better for your travel needs and spending habits. Each card provides the benefit once every four to five years. Here's the list of all the widely available cards that we came across in our search.
|Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card||Every four years|
|The Business Platinum Card® from American Express||Every four years for Global Entry, every 4.5 years for TSA Precheck|
|Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card||Every four years|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card||Every four years|
|Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®||Every five years|
|Citi Prestige® Credit Card||Every five years|
|Expedia®+ Voyager Card from Citi||Every year ($100 annual air travel credit)|
|IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card||Every four years|
|Mastercard® Gold Card™||Every five years|
|Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card||Every four years for Global Entry, every 4.5 years for TSA Precheck|
|PenFed Pathfinder Rewards American Express Card||Every four years|
|The Platinum Card® from American Express||Every four years for Global Entry, every 4.5 years for TSA Precheck|
The information related to Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, Citi Prestige® Credit Card and Expedia®+ Voyager Card from Citi and PenFed Pathfinder Rewards American Express Card has been independently collected by ValuePenguin and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication. Terms apply to American Express credit card offers. See americanexpress.com for more information.