International Air Travelers: CBP Collaborates with Stakeholders to Facilitate the Arrivals Process, but Could Strengthen Reporting of Airport Wait Times

Over 326,000 passengers and crew entered the United States through 241 international airports on an average day in fiscal year 2016, according to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). In 2007, CBP started its Model Ports program to improve the international arrivals process for travelers to the United States by implementing technology to facilitate entry and expanding public-private partnerships, among other things. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) was asked to review this program and subsequent airport travel and tourism facilitation initiatives at the 17 busiest U.S. international airports associated with the president’s National Travel and Tourism Strategy. This report examines (1) how CBP and stakeholders have implemented airport travel and tourism facilitation initiatives, (2) how CBP and stakeholders manage staff to facilitate the traveler entry process, and (3) the extent to which CBP has mechanisms to monitor and report wait times at U.S. international airports. GAO collected data on the implementation of travel and tourism facilitation initiatives and analyzed CBP officer staffing and wait time data at the 17 airports from fiscal years 2014 through 2016. GAO also visited a nongeneralizable sample of 11 airports, selected based on traveler volume and variety of implemented initiatives, among other factors, and interviewed CBP, airport, and airline officials at 15 of the 17 airports. GAO recommends that CBP report airport wait time data for different categories of travelers. CBP concurred with the recommendation and identified planned actions to address the recommendation.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; Maps; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 127p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01635090
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: GAO-17-470
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 22 2017 2:46PM