As travel increases again, the CBP One app launched in 2020 is seeing a commensurate increase in real-world usage and is poised to deliver even more features in the future.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection launched the CBP One mobile app on the Apple App and Google Play stores on October 28, 2020, as a streamlined portal to some of America’s most used services. agency.
“To balance our important mission of safety and security with facilitating legitimate travel and commerce that fuels our nation’s economy, CBP is exploring ways to work with the public and our stakeholders to modernize and improve our processes.” , said Jody Hardin, acting executive. director of program planning, analysis and evaluation, said Wednesday during a roundtable with the media.
The app has been deployed with I-94 Entry for travelers to make a provisional application before arriving at a land border crossing, as well as an inspection appointment request feature for brokers, carriers and freight forwarders who enter the country with organic and agricultural products.
“Using the CBP One I-94 functionality to request and pay for a provisional I-94 prior to arrival will save foreign travelers time and streamline their processing at land ports of entry,” said Tricia Kennedy. , Acting Director of the Office of Strategic Transformation. “In some cases, this will eliminate the need for travelers to be referred to a secondary area for processing. In any case, this will facilitate data entry and eliminate the collection of fees at the point of entry.
Since the app was rolled out while travel was still restricted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, its use had also been limited. But “since travel resumed in November, more than 100,000 provisional I-94s have been applied through the CBP One app,” Kennedy reported. She attributes this to marketing efforts to ensure travelers know about the features and “the convenience of applying through a handheld device even at the point of entry.”
Through CBP One, foreign travelers can view their last 10 years of travel history on their smartphone and see a real-time calculation of the time remaining in their authorized length of stay on an active I-94.
“In addition, travelers arriving by land, air, or sea, if they receive an automated I-94 during the admission process at the port of entry, they can use CBP One’s I-94 features to gain instant access their proof of admission on their handheld device,” she said.
With the functionality that allows air travelers to request an inspection and provide the necessary documentation regarding hand carriage of licensed biological material, live animals, or hunting trophies, travelers can also notify CBP of the need to disinfect their shoes if the traveler has visited a farm or ranch in a foreign country. “This is particularly appealing to industry professionals or frequent travelers who are aware of this requirement in advance and are looking for ways to expedite their customs clearance upon arrival,” Kennedy noted.
The app allows live updates on the status of the inspection request and provides the ability to chat with an agency agricultural specialist if needed.
“Most importantly, the screening of these travelers will be expedited through CBP’s ability to review information and rule on any issues or concerns in advance,” she said.
CBP will soon begin testing a new capability for small land border bus companies to submit passenger biographical and documentary information in advance; currently this is done by commercial airlines, cruise ships and some major bus companies.
By the end of this year, CBP plans to merge the CBP ROAM mobile app, which was launched in 2017 and allows boaters to report their entry into the United States to CBP, into the CBP One platform.
“CBP is also looking to implement the ability for pedestrians to voluntarily submit advanced information before arriving at the land border to expedite their journey,” Kennedy said. “We will also allow foreign nationals who have an electronic I-94 issued upon arrival and wish to provide proof of exit through the CBP One app to ensure they have proof that they have met their authorized stay.”
CBP One was used last year in partnership with international organizations and non-governmental organizations to collect advanced information on migrants excepted from the CDC Title 42 order for humanitarian reasons.
“This is the information that would have been collected at the point of entry as it was processed, but submitting this information to us in advance has allowed us to automatically populate some of our systems when it arrives and speed up the process. how long it would take for CBP to process them,” Kennedy said, adding that it “reduced the amount of time they spent in a collective setting during the peak and the ongoing pandemic, and reduced what we estimate to be approximately 15 minutes per person in processing time at the point of entry.”
“We’re looking to see if this is something we could implement outside of CDC’s Title 42 ordering restrictions,” she said. “But we are still trying to determine whether or not this is something that would continue to reap the same benefits for individuals and for CBP.”