If you often travel for work, waiting in line at airport security can be maddening, especially when you’ve got your shoe/belt/laptop removal system down to a quick science. A line is a line, and you have to wait your turn. Except you don’t. Here’s how to bypass snaking security lines.
Frequent American and Delta Air Lines fliers can participate in Transportation Security Administration’s PreCheck program. It’s free, and to become part of the program, you agree to let American or Delta share your frequent flier information with the TSA, which approves travelers for the program. Members are reassessed every year. About 35 airports honor PreCheck.
Private enterprise Clear has introduced a way to help travelers avoid lines. Frequent fliers can buy an identity card with embedded iris scans and fingerprints, which allows them to skip the TSA identification process. Available in Orlando, Denver, and San Francisco airports, Clear lets travelers go straight to security screening after scanning their Clear cards on the card reader.
Forget domestic lines. If you often travel internationally, you know what accurate delays are like. Going through customs and immigration can be a beast. Global Entry, operated by the Customs and Border Protection agency, lets authorized travelers re-enter the United States after stopping at an electronic kiosk rather than going through an entry interview. To become a program participant, travelers must complete an online questionnaire and agree to a background check. If approved, an in-person meeting with an immigration agent is the final step. Global Entry is available at 26 U.S. airports and five in Canada.