Piedmont Triad International Airport has been making it easy for people to get their TSA PreCheck credentials lately by holding a series of events – like one coming up in mid-May that offers one-stop shopping to get that service.

Pre-Check allows you to move faster through airport security, experience less invasive searches and it even lets you keep your shoes on.

However, TSA-Precheck isn’t the gold standard for moving smoothly through airport security – a program called Global Entry is – and if, you’re a North Carolina resident, good luck getting that kind of preclearance.

That’s not because of any skeletons in your closet or because the government sees you as a threat – but simply because, logistically, in North Carolina, the process includes a difficult step that very few are willing to negotiate.

Both TSA PreCheck and Global Entry are part of the Department of Homeland Security’s “Trusted Traveler Programs.”  And while TSA PreCheck provides some expedited screening benefits for flights at some US Airports, the Global Entry program provides all the benefits of TSA PreCheck in addition to expedited US customs screening for international air travelers when coming back into the country.

Anyone who’s recently flown from, say, Incheon International Airport in Seoul to Atlanta, knows that the lines at customs can be awfully long and it would be nice to have a Global Entry pass to move to the head of the line and skip some of the invasive searches.

The PreCheck Program usually cost about $78, while the Global Entry program cost $100. Considering the advantages, the difference in money is irrelevant, but there’s one major sticking point to getting a Global Entry pass: You have to appear in person at a Global Entry office and, in the state of North Carolina, there’s exactly one office and it’s at the place you would probably least like to go – Charlotte-Douglas International Airport.

To get the Global Entry pass, you have to Create a Trusted Traveler Program account. Then log into the account and complete the application. You then pay $100 – which is non-refundable if you get turned down.

Then there’s the killer step: Schedule an interview at a Global Entry Enrollment Center.  In other words, drive to the sole Global Entry office in the state – at Charlotte Douglas International Airport – and be interviewed.

There may be some hope of avoiding this in the future.  Right now, going to Charlotte is the only way, but at some point Piedmont Triad International Airport (PTIA) may help area residents out.

Piedmont Triad Airport Authority Marketing and Customer Relations Manager Stephanie Freeman said there may be plans in the works to hold a Global Entry event in Greensboro.

“Yes, we are trying to set up a pop-up Global event,” Freeman said this week, “but scheduling has been difficult with Customs and Border Patrol being short-staffed.”

If PTIA does eventually offer the Global Entry Option and you do any amount of international flying, you should strongly consider getting a Global Entry pass there.  It’s a lot better than driving to Charlotte and navigating that labyrinthian airport.

Once you’re approved for either PreCheck or Global Entry, you’re good to go for five years.