Airport Escort Screening Courtesies
Under the Office of the Chief of Protocol’s Airport Escort Screening Courtesies Program, qualifying foreign officials can be assigned a Department of State escort officer who is authorized to assist dignitaries with their departure(s) from certain airports in the United States.
Foreign officials who are the functional equivalents of members of the Cabinet of the United States are eligible for the services provided under the Airport Escort Screening Courtesies Program, when they are not escorted by United States Secret Service, Department of State Diplomatic Security Service or other recognized USG official protective details. The dignitary’s spouse and children under the age of twelve may also receive services under the Airport Escort Screening Courtesies Program when accompanying the dignitary. Members of the delegation accompanying the escorted official will be subject to customary screening.
The Department of State’s escort officer will contact the departing dignitary’s designated point of contact(s) to coordinate the departure from a domestic airport. The escort officer will set up a meeting point at the airport and proceed to escort the VIP through the security screening process. Usually, the escort officer will remain until the VIP is on the plane and it has taken off. It is important to alert the Office of the Chief of Protocol of any changes to travel plans as soon as possible.
The Airport Escort Screening Courtesies Program addresses only departures from designated U.S. Airports. The Courtesies of the Port Program is for arriving dignitaries with requests submitted in e-Gov. Both programs are administered by the Office of the Chief of Protocol.
Missions requesting a United States Secret Service or Diplomatic Security Service protective detail for a foreign dignitary through the Courtesies of the Port Program should not also request Airport Escort Screening Courtesies. In these cases, the United States Secret Service or Diplomatic Security Service will provide the same courtesies when the VIP departs.
If the dignitary is traveling with armed security, contact the Bureau of Diplomatic Security’s Protective Liaison Division at (202)895-3600. Do not submit a request for assistance under the Airport Escort Screening Courtesies Program.
For a head of state traveling under the protection of the U.S. Secret Service, do not request assistance under the Airport Escort Screening Courtesies Program.
Questions concerning escort screening should be directed to the Office of the Chief of Protocol at firstname.lastname@example.org or (202) 647-4503.