By Brooke Porter Katz
July 18, 2014

Big news for business travelers: For the first time since being introduced in 1997, the APEC Business Travel Card (ABTC)—which provides pre-clearance and expedited immigration processing at airports and seaports in every APEC country—is accepting applications for U.S. citizens.

There are currently 21 members of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation—including Australia, China, Mexico, and Singapore, to name a few—which supports sustainable economic growth in the Asia-Pacific region.

Under the pilot program, U.S. citizens can apply via Customs and Border Protection (CBP) through the online enrollment system GOES. Candidates must be actively engaged in APEC business and have “trusted traveler” status via Global Entry, SENTRI, or NEXUS, which you also apply for on GOES. (You can request both at the same time.) More details can be found on the CBP’s FAQ page.

"We know time is money, and when you are a frequent business traveler every minute saved counts," says Bob Wang of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Senior Official for APEC. "We will continue to look for ways to make travel faster, easier, and more secure through APEC initiatives.”

For you Canucks out there, Canada has also launched a pilot program for ABTC, available for NEXUS members.

Brooke Porter Katz is an Associate Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @brookeporter1.