Last year, the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) identified 11 foreign, international airports for the expansion of the US Customs and Immigration Preclearance program and St Maarten’s SXM Airport was on the list!
Before a new a station can be opened, the US and the host country must negotiate an agreement allowing it. A 4 person delegation from the US Government is visiting the island to start negotiations about the establishment of the US Customs and Immigration Preclearance program at the SXM Airport this week, with formal negotiations getting underway at 9am Thursday, February 16.
For travelers boarding a flight in St Maarten to the US, you’ll clear US customs and immigration prior to boarding your aircraft, and your international flight back to the US will arrive like a domestic flight.
Preclearance at the cruise port will also be part of the negotiations to facilitate future expansion of homeporting.