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Which Is Best - TSA Pre-Check, Clear or Global Entry?

Oct 14, 2019

Airport Security

Often times TravelPlex travel advisors are asked what we would do if we were to chose between TSA Pre-Check, Global Entry and Clear. The following breakout provides a very easy way to decide which of the three options might be best for your personal travel needs. A full article on this subject can be accessed at the end of this blog.

Global Entry is the best overall option. One CNET writer once called it "the best $100 I ever spent", and the first time you use it, you'll agree. Global Entry folds in all of the advantages of TSA PreCheck-- much faster and less invasive TSA security checks -- and adds an express line through customs and immigration on your way back to the US from international airports and destinations. If you have a passport, this is the one to get.

TSA Pre is the best option if you don't have a passport. If you only travel domestically, TSA PreCheck will make flying a far less onerous process. But if you take even one international trip or head to one international airport in the next five years, you'll kick yourself if you don't pay the $15 extra for Global Entry.

We don't recommend Clear at its current price. The base price of Clear just feels prohibitive. It's almost $200 a year, versus just $20 for Global Entry. And that application fee doesn't buy you the quicker TSA PreCheck security check, so you're probably still going to want to invest in Global Entry or TSA PreCheck anyway. Without a price drop or an expanded service tier, Clear just doesn't seem to be worth it.

Click here to access a CNET article on this subject written by Matt Elliott