HOUSTON -- U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials joined the City of Houston and Southwest Airlines to officially open the international terminal at William P. Hobby today.
This is the second international terminal within the city's limits.
“CBP is proud to have worked with Southwest Airlines and the City of Houston to bring international air service to Houston Hobby Airport after a 46-year hiatus,” said Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske. “CBP is strongly committed to promoting travel and tourism to the United States by improving the international arrivals experience and the opening of this new international terminal, along with our Trusted Traveler Programs and Automated Passport Control are important steps to enhancing travelers’ arrival experience.”
The new international terminal features five gates which can accommodate both domestic and international passengers and a brand new, modern Federal Inspections Services facility. Arriving international travelers can use one of 14 Automated Passport Control or one of six Global Entry kiosks to expedite CBP processing. CBP officers and agriculture specialists are also at Hobby performing the priority mission of border security while facilitating legitimate travel.
“CBP recognizes the critical role we play in supporting our local and national economies through travel facilitation,” said Houston CBP Director of Field Operations Judson Murdock II. “To accommodate the growing demand for additional CBP services, we leverage technology, public-private partnerships and other initiatives.”
CBP officers and agriculture specialists will process Hobby’s first present-day international passengers, who are arriving from Cancun, Mexico, shortly after 1:30 p.m.
The city estimates that annual international air service will eventually increase the annual passenger total at Hobby airport to more than one million travelers.
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.