The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is encouraging people to apply for TSA PreCheck, instead of Global Entry, for now.
The recommendation has been made in the wake of Global Entry application approvals taking up to 18 months.
A banner on the DHS website reads “If you do not travel multiple times per year internationally, we recommend applying for the TSA PreCheck Program. Most TSA PreCheck applicants can schedule an appointment in less than 2 weeks and, if approved, can receive a Known Traveler Number (KTN) in about 3 to 5 days after the appointment.”
TSA PreCheck gives travelers expedited security clearance on domestic flights. Global Entry includes all of the TSA PreCheck benefits but also provides them with expedited US customs screening when returning from international travels.
Because it includes all of the privileges of TSA PreCheck, we typically believe that Global Entry is the most sensible choice for avid travelers if they are already going through the hassle of filling out paperwork. But given the massive backlog of applications, anyone not traveling overseas in the near future may want to skip the year+ long wait and at least get the domestic travel benefit.