The article in the May 5 Travel section “To Keep Your Global Entry, Avoid These Three Mistakes” (On the Spot by Terry Gardner) was informative. I made sure to forward it to my friends and loved ones who use this great service.
I would add one more caution about driving back from Mexico. My friends and family use our cards to return to the U.S. in the Sentri lanes. [Editor’s note: Customs and Border Protection explains that Sentri, a Trusted Traveler program, “allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers upon arrival in the United States. Participants may enter the United States by using dedicated primary lanes into the United States at southern land border ports. Travelers must be pre-approved for the Sentri program. All applicants undergo a rigorous background check and in-person interview before enrollment.” To read more: bit.ly/Sentriprogram.]
Recently, my son was returning with a few friends; his car has Sentri and all people in the car have either a Global Entry or Sentri card issued to them. Unfortunately, one friend didn’t have his card with him. They were sent to secondary screening, the car was searched and my son was given a strike against his card. One more strike and he will lose the privileges.
Make sure all people have the cards and paperwork with them before entering.
Even more caution needed
Catharine Hamm’s safety article has eye-openers about potential dangerous situations for men as well as women (“For Women Traveling Alone, Preparation Is Key to Safety,” On the Spot, April 21). But regarding the " entering an elevator” issue, it suggests “let him or her punch their floor button first.”
First or not, I’m not sure it is wise to let them them see which floor you push. Perhaps it would be worthwhile to push an arbitrary higher-numbered floor. Once he or she has exited at their floor, enjoy the round-trip tour as you return to your proper floor.
Rancho Palos Verdes