Has anyone used Mobile Pass App (not the payed version)? When do you put your information in? Any tips or tricks?
Unless you pay, your information won’t be kept so I would guess you would put it in after you land? I used it once right after it was available so I cannot say how long your info remains now, as you wait for immigration and customs. I use global entry.
I use it all the time. Load the free app onto your phone, then when you land you add in your information, take a picture, and as soon as you have cell service you hit the "upload" button to send your data. You will get a confirmation that you use to go to the special Mobile Pass line (and thereby avoid the long lines where everyone else goes. You can load more than 1 person's info on the app if you are traveling together. Not all airports have a special lane, but the big ones (JFK, LAX, ORD, etc) do. It was a huge timesaver a couple of weeks ago when I landed at LAX. It's easy to use, even if it no longer saves your info for future use. Just be sure you have a bit of battery power left on your phone!
You only have three hours after completing the App's input. I don't want to be typing in and repeatedly-proof reading mission-critical strings of numbers while walking to Immigration. (Imagine the result if you got a digit wrong in your passport number or expiration date!) Because my wife and I were separated on our last arrival, I had trouble passing her my phone to take her own picture. Then she had to get the phone back to me without messing up the input screen.
We just used the free version on my iPad today. Yes, the info will only be held for 4 hours, as I set it up before we took off, and it was off the pad when I checked mid-flight, which I expected.
So I reentered our passport data 3 hours before landing, and then opened it again while we were deplaning and answered the CBP questions. And as soon as I could log on to the wi-fi, submitted it. Took about 10 seconds to have my code. Now for whatever reasons the border agent was not happy because I presented my pad and not a phone, and even asked why we were not using a phone - to which my wife opened her flip phone. And went through. There was no one in that line. I really see no big deal in doing this on the plane each time we are coming back, it's not like we have more pressing things to do in flight.
As an aside, they made an announcement on the plane that there were no more landing cards to be filled out, and anyone who possibly could was to use the kiosks.
And on another note, we landed in Heathrow T5 beginning this trip, about 10 AM, and it took under a minute to wlak into passport control, insert our passports, and move on.
I always use the app when landing at Chicago. You just have to fill the info in on your flight home - take a picture and hope you get connected in the immigration hall for it all to work. The first time I used it, I had problems connecting. However, I have used it over the last several times I have passed through Chicago and it has been great. I just held my phone open on the app as I walked into the immigration hall and I was directed to an empty line. Saves a lot of time.
I have also used this app as others described (entering data on the flight and finishing when the plane lands) when arriving in Boston and it was a great time saver. So I haven’t invested in Global Entry at this point.