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Published on Monday, June 1, 2015

US expanding preclearance to nine more countries

The US preclearance program could be about to spread its wings to Europe and Japan.

The Department of Homeland Security said it is in talks to have US customs officers stationed at 10 airports in nine more countries.

These were revealed as Belgium, the Dominican Republic, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and the United Kingdom.

If talks are successful for all, it would nearly double the number of locations where preclearance is available.

"Preclearance is a win-win for the traveling public. It provides aviation and homeland security, and it reduces wait times upon arrival at the busiest U.S. airports," said Homeland Secretary Jeh Johnson.

Trade group Airlines for America has warmly welcomed the move.

"U.S. airlines drive $1.5 trillion in economic activity, and by improving the passenger experience for visitors or those returning to the United States, while improving security, we can build on that," said A4A President & CEO Nick Calio.

US airlines such as JetBlue, United and American Airlines have also lauded the decision to expand the program. 

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