Global program at MEM makes for easier travel outside U.S. - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Global program at MEM makes for easier travel outside U.S.

(Source: WMC Action News 5) (Source: WMC Action News 5)
A ribbon cutting for the program was held Thursday. (Source: WMC Action News 5) A ribbon cutting for the program was held Thursday. (Source: WMC Action News 5)
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) -

A major upgrade at Memphis International Airport could help big businesses, like FedEx, who are no stranger to going international.

MEM has unveiled a global enrollment entry program for those who want to travel freely in and out of the country with a new pre-approved process.

“It's very, very convenient and makes customs much easier when you return,” retired FedEx traveler Jerry Trudell said.

Trudell said bringing a global enrollment center to Memphis is a huge benefit.

“This is a wonderful convenience for the Memphians who did not have the opportunity to do it before, because it started out you had to go to Atlanta, Dallas, and it's finally focused back to Memphis,” Trudell said.

For a $100 fee, low-risk travelers can expedite clearance across the country. The membership is good for five years.

“It's a lot of us who like to travel internationally but this is also combining TSA pre-check,” Trudell said.

Since enrollment recently opened online, applications have poured in from across the Mid-South.

Applicants must have a U.S. passport or permanent resident card, undergo a background check with fingerprinting, and complete an in-person interview by appointment.

“It's considered an inspection,” Global Enrollment Program manager Steven Mongin said. “So what we are doing with the interview, we are determining their identity, verifying their travel documents, and collecting their biometrics.”

The program provides an opportunity to put MEM on the map with 48 other U.S. airports, an amenity Trudell said is overdue.

“There's a lot of travel that's required here in Memphis. It's a very big city and it's time for this to have come,” he said.

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