CBP Office of Field Operations, Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas Port of Entry Promotes SENTRI, Ready Lanes
HIDALGO, Texas—U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Field Operations (OFO) at the Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas Port of Entry wants to encourage international travelers who cross the border frequently to take advantage of two programs designed to facilitate the processing of passenger traffic, the Secure Electronic Network for Travelers Rapid Inspection (SENTRI) program and the Ready Lanes.
SENTRI was established to expedite the movement of eligible, pre-screened, low-risk, pre-approved travelers on the southern border through vehicle traffic lanes designated for the exclusive use of SENTRI members.
Like most international crossings along the southern border, the Port of Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas also has designated “Ready Lanes,” in which a special reader pre-scans their radiofrequency identification (RFID) technology--enabled entry documents just before they arrive at the primary inspection booth, allowing for higher efficiency in processing travelers. Holders of entry documents equipped with RFID technology, such as the U.S. passport card and newer versions of the laser visa and resident alien card can take advantage of these lanes.
“SENTRI is a fantastic program which allows frequent border crossers an opportunity to expeditiously cross into the U.S. from Mexico, without having to wait in line with regular traffic,” said Port Director Efrain Solis, Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas Port of Entry. “We also encourage travelers to take advantage of the Ready Lanes, which are designated with LED signage.”
SENTRI members are processed in an expeditious manner upon arrival at the port of entry and have dedicated lanes for their exclusive use. This helps reduce traffic congestion and delays that are costly to travelers while maintaining high levels of security at our land border crossings. The Hidalgo International Bridge has a true, dedicated SENTRI lane which begins at the Reynosa Mexican Customs area and continues to a CBP primary inspectional lane. Due to the length of the international bridges in Pharr and Anzalduas, the designated lanes there are modified, but still beneficial.
Since the SENTRI lane’s inception in 2007 at the Hidalgo International Bridge, the enrollment statistics have steadily increased every year. Also with expanded hours of operation at the SENTRI enrollment center at the Anzalduas International Bridge, the application process has also improved. SENTRI applicants may apply online using the Global Online Enrollment System (GOES), and once the initial application is approved, the applicant will be required to present himself or herself (in person) for an interview at a SENTRI Enrollment Center.
Enrollment is scheduled by appointment, which may be made online or over the phone at the SENTRI Enrollment Centers. All persons that will be crossing the border in a registered vehicle must apply, including children. The cost for the program is $122.25 per person and is valid for 5 years. The hours of operation for the Anzalduas SENTRI Enrollment Center are as follows:
- Monday through Friday, from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
- Saturday, from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
- 5911 South Stewart Road, Mission, Texas 78572
For more information online regarding the SENTRI application process, please visit the SENTRI webpage.
For those wishing to utilize the Ready Lanes, newer versions of entry documents may be obtained at U.S. consular offices or passport acceptance facilities, depending on the document sought. Ready Lanes provide expedited processing through readers that capture information from RFID-enabled entry documents. Processing is 20 percent faster than normal lanes and provide a time savings of up to 20 seconds per vehicle. Those who have renewed their entry documents within the last 24 months already have RFID-enabled documents and may not know it. Frequent local cross-border travelers are encouraged to obtain these RFID-enabled documents to utilize the Ready Lanes. The benefits of Ready Lane usage are particularly noticed during peak travel periods such as Christmas and Semana Santa but daily Ready Lane usage also pays dividends in terms of time savings all year long.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.