TSA tweaking security checks for holidays
Thanksgiving is one of the busiest travel times of the year. And with the holiday coming up next week, airports in Houston and across the country are going to be jam packed with people on their way to visit family.
That means long lines to check in and get your boarding pass. That also means long lines to get through security.
The Transportation Security Administration has heard many complaints over the years about what kind of checks are being performed and how long it takes to get those checks done. So on Tuesday, they announced some new procedures that they think will help ease the pain of waiting in line.
One of the changes is called the ‘Pre-Check’ program. Known travelers (frequent flyers) and active duty service members at select airports are eligible for what the TSA is calling an expedited process. Carrie Harmon of the TSA explained to KTRH how you can become eligible.
“There are two ways to participate. One is to be a frequent flyer that is invited by certain airlines that are in the program. The other way it to join one of CBT’s Trusted Traveler Programs,” Harmon told KTRH.
There are also some changes being made to the way children and the elderly are screened. There have been complaints for years that children and older people do not need to be checked as strenuously as other passengers. Harmon said those complaints have been heard.
“Children under 12 no longer have to remove their shoes at the checkpoint,” she explained. “For 75 and older, they can keep on their light jacket.
These changes, the TSA said, should reduce, but not eliminate the need for pat-downs.
The changes were announced yesterday at a news conference in Washington, D.C. with TSA chief John Pistole.