The dreaded ‘X’ on my Global Entry receipt


I arrived early yesterday evening from Madrid on Iberia to JFK’s Terminal 7. Zipping past the queue to go to the GE kiosks I thought it odd that I had not been asked about which flight I had landed on. Answering all the Customs questions with the usual ‘No’, I then got a message to go and see an Immigration Inspector and the dreaded large X through the receipt.

Oh Dear!

There was a very helpful agent in the area who immediately took me to the front of a queue, but when he saw that there was a family there, moved me to the head of another line where the person being inspected was just leaving. This was much to the chagrin of the person who had previously been first.

The inspector at the desk was a delight, just checking why I was in the country, he took a full set of fingerprints and then sent me on my way. No questions at Customs and I was only delayed about 5 minutes.

Pretty good service for someone who received the ‘Black Spot’ of Global Entry.

Thinking back my last visit required me to select the airline and enter the flight number as it appears not to have been transferred. At Madrid there was a query about my passport and when I saw the agent she was removing a ‘Second Passport’ record from my PNR. In retrospect this was my Known Traveller Number and I wonder if that could have had any impact. Luckily my onward flights to LAX and Honolulu both secure TSAPrecheck so it doesn’t seem to be too bad.

Perhaps it really was just a random check!



  1. Nothing wrong with getting the X on the GE card. It just means the machine can’t clear you and requires human intervention. Or completely random.

    I get them all the time when I declared that I had excessive alcohol in my possession.

  2. I get the big O on mine when I list that I have food, usually it’s just spices/chips, but always decide to be safe and never get sent to secondary when I tell them what I have. Rather not get fined/lose my GE over something silly

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