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Global entry cost covered by credit card

I have a question currently on the forum about Global entry and several people responded that their credit card covered the cost. Which credit cards do that and how does that work?

Posted by
442 posts

Those are probably luxury cards. Most cost several hundred dollars to get and the perks include stuff like travel lounge access, hotel upgrades airline upgrades, and Gobal Access in the form of credits for GA and TSA-precheck, usually $100 every four years. There may be some lower tier cards that offer GE assistance or subsidy. Here's what AmEx says for many of their cards: "Luxury Perks: Global Entry or TSA Pre✓® application fee credit every four years ..."

If you belong to any travel rewards program, check with the issuer for perks you may not be aware of. My mileage program offered a Global Entry fast track a few months ago but it wasn't free, they just made it very convenient.

Hope you get more definitive references.

https://www.nerdwallet.com/best/credit-cards/premium

https://thepointsguy.com/guide/battle-of-the-premium-travel-rewards-cards/

Posted by
123 posts

I used my Chase Sapphire Reserve for me, and my United Mileage Plus credit card for my wife's fee.

You just use the card that has that benefit, and when the charge goes through you get a statement credit reimbursing you for that fee. Pretty simple.

Posted by
223 posts

For many reasons we pay for the premium Delta American Express Platinum card. Global Entry or TSA Precheck is covered for the cardholder every five years. You charge the fee to the card and Amex credits it back to you.

Posted by
2959 posts

You would need to check with the different cards. Here is how Chase Sapphire Reserve would price out for you.

Initial annual fee $550. Point sign up bonus worth $500.. $300 travel credit,$100 Global Entry fee credit. So far you are $350 ahead. You also get travel insurance, rental car insurance, airport lounge access, some lyft discounts, and $60 direct credit from Door Dash. You earn 3% back on travel and dining, 1% everything else.

Only you can decide if this or any other credit card is a match for you or your needs. You may just prefer to pay the $100 global entry fee.

Posted by
2503 posts

We have two ordinary credit cards that are airline affiliated, United and AA. We used the United card to receive the $100 reimbursed for our 5 year Global Entry this year. Our sister-in-law also got Global Entry this year but she only has a Southwest card so no reimbursement for her (we also have a SW card).

Read the fine print of any cc you have you may already have this perk. If you don’t have this perk and want to get an airline card, check to see how many FF miles they are offering, what their annual fee is and prepare to do it when you have some major expenses coming up so you can meet their charging requirements in a timely manner. Or just pay the $100.

Posted by
5019 posts

Short answer to OP's question: there are many cards that offer this benefit. You will need to do a search.

How does it work? For those cards that offer the benefit, you simply use the card when you pay the fee for Global Entry/TSA Precheck, and you receive a statement credit equal to the cost -- basically, what you spend to enroll in the Global Entry/TSA Precheck programs gets refunded (up to a point) so it's zero cost to you for Global Entry/TSA Precheck.

It's generally true that cards offering this particular benefit have an annual fee, sometimes a hefty one (though not always a huge one). Every card has different benefits (more than just this one) and costs. You need to shop around and see which one (if any) makes sense for you, there are a dizzying number of choices.

Caveat emptor: there is a huge cottage industry of online bloggers (masquerading as "travel writers") whose actual business is incessantly pushing credit cards on the unsuspecting. They make their money (sometimes a lot of it) by getting people to sign up for credit cards via referral links on their websites. In most cases there's at least some (often a lot) of deception involved, and the deals being pushed on these blogs are not the best deals available. (One of the most notorious bad examples of this practice is listed in a link above -- that popular website constantly pushes referral links that primarily benefit the blog owner, not you, resulting in a bad deal for those that follow its links.) It's OK to learn about the benefits of different cards from these scammers, um, I mean these helpful bloggers, but never use one of their links -- any website you see pushing credit card links should be a red flag. You can always do just as well, and usually better, by finding a link in a non-profit website (for example, Flyertalk almost always has links to the best deals for any card, there's no scam, no deception, no referral fees being paid using the links there, unlike on most of the credit card pushing blogs).

Posted by
3303 posts

Every card I am aware of that may pay for Global Entry or TSA Pre Check are airline affiliated cards that have a hefty annual fee. Usually much more than the $100 or so the programs cost. You might be able to get one of those with the first year annual fee waived and be able to cancel it before the next year to avoid paying the annual fee. Or keep the card if you find the cost is worth the benefits. You will have to look at the various ones on offer to see which would work best for you.

Some airlines will also pay for you to join GE or TSA Pre, usually you have to be at a higher level of frequent flyer with them for this to happen (this is how I got my initial GE sign up fee paid). Some allow you to cash in a few miles from the frequent flyer program to cover the cost no matter your level. Hawaiian Airlines will allow you to cash in 10,000 miles to cover TSA Pre for example. Of course you have to have the miles with them for this to happen and not mind using them for this instead of for a flight.

Posted by
6176 posts

If you have to get the kind of credit card that reimburses global entry, then you're better off just paying for it outright. Luxury cards have a steep annual fee that is multiple times the cost of global entry.

Posted by
2959 posts

I am a little surprised at the blanket response from people that getting a card that pays for this is more expensive. It is usually not more expensive in the first year of the card because of sign up bonuses and other perks. I encourage people to do direct research as you make financial decisions. A card may or may not be the best choice for you, but make your decision on actual figures- not on claims from people who have not run the numbers or do not know your situation.

Posted by
314 posts

I got the United Explorer MileagePlus card and besides the 40,000 miles they are now offering, I got the cost of the Global Entry application covered. As soon as I signed up at the Global Entry website, the next day the charge was taken off my card. That was quick. However, that was on September 20 and it's almost been 4 months and my application still has not been processed. So hopefully you aren't traveling anytime soon.

Posted by
1169 posts

My Credit Union card covers it. It’s free, it pays cash back.

I suggest looking at a credit union instead of a bank.

Posted by
477 posts

The operative term is “first year of the card”.... that is the only time it is a deal for most. You get the 50-100k bonus points once. And if you keep opening and closing credit cards every year your credit score will take a hit (should you ever need to borrow, car, house—-not everyone here is retired with fully paid for house with no intent to ever move). Now if you love airport lounges and use them many times a year (paying cash) then of course the Prem full boat cards with free lounge and other perks can save some money.

In reality you need to look at all the benefits provided (ignoring initial year) and make a decision as to cost/benefit. As indicated there are some “small- under $100” cards and credit union cards that supply extensive benefits that might make a very nice middle point for many.

Posted by
123 posts

Yeah, i would never sign up for a new Credit Card just for this benefit alone. Spending habits is one of the main factors when it comes to if a credit card is worth it, but there are tons of CC's out there that can fit almost everyone's needs (Unless you are Dave Ramsey).

Posted by
1217 posts

We've got the AmEx Delta Platinum Skymiles card for the annual buy one-get one domestic coach coupon- we live in an expensive airfare market and will more than recoup the annual fee on one plane ticket purchase- as well as the Medallion-Qualifying Miles bonus options. (I live in the small metro South so Delta seems inevitable. When I die it's going to involve a connection through ATL first in order to get to heaven or hell)

They're adding TSA Pre (already have it) or Global Entry as a card benefit on February 1, and since I should be able to line up an out of town interview at some point between now and August, I figure I might as well sign up for it when that benefit kicks in and my passport comes back for renewal with its shiny new number.

Posted by
124 posts

I have had the Chase Sapphire Reserve for many years now. in addition to what people are saying above, I pay no foreign transaction fees (3% for many cards), I get 3 miles for every dollar spent on travel, I get $300 back right away on any travel and hotels expenses, the $100 for Global Entry, the Priority Plus card gives us $23 in free food at participating restaurants in the airports, and finally, their fraud alert has been outstanding in calling us with anything looking suspicious without over-revving on this. Sure been worth it to us.

Posted by
36 posts

I have the BofA Premium Rewards card, which is $99/year, but currently has a 50K point signing bonus (equates to $500 in statement credits). No foreign transaction fees, a $100 statement credit for Global Entry/TSA Precheck (once every 4 years), plus $100 in incidental airline fees. An added bonus - 2 points per dollar on travel/dining expenses.