I Paid for TSA PreCheck – But I Watched as Hundreds (Thousands?) of Travelers Received It for Free Last Week

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I Paid for TSA PreCheck – But I Watched as Hundreds (Thousands?) of Travelers Received It for Free Last Week

Joseph HostetlerI Paid for TSA PreCheck – But I Watched as Hundreds (Thousands?) of Travelers Received It for Free Last WeekMillion Mile Secrets Team

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A membership to TSA PreCheck means you won’t have to remove your toiletries or computer from your bag, or even take off your jacket at security checkpoints!  You even get your very own dedicated TSA lane.

Membership to TSA PreCheck costs $85.  Though there are 2 ways to get TSA PreCheck for free.

First, you can pay for it with a card that reimburses you the application fee, such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve or the United℠ Explorer CardSecond, the TSA can randomly select you for the privilege the day of your flight.

I’ve said before, I don’t much like the latter.  It cheapens the TSA PreCheck membership that many of us made an effort to acquire.  And on my way home from this past Thanksgiving, I witnessed hundreds of travelers pre-selected for TSA PreCheck!

TSA PreCheck Is Made for Days Like This…or at Least It Should Be

Heading into the security checkpoint at the Dallas airport, TSA officers were busily announcing that “everybody has TSA PreCheck today.”  They had to continue screaming for everyone to keep their jackets, belts, and shoes on, and to stop removing laptops from bags.  Huge swathes of travelers were being waved through the metal detectors like a big unscreened conga line.

This display didn’t help the TSA’s argument that they are any more than just “security theater,” an agency that exists just to make everyone feel safer.  If I were of the opinion that the TSA is an effective line of defense against terrorism, I would have felt a little unsafe with the laxity I experienced over Thanksgiving weekend.

But I have to say, I can’t remember a faster and more enjoyable TSA experience!  I used to worry that if too many travelers enrolled in TSA PreCheck, the dedicated lane would be just as long and arduous as the regular TSA lanes.  But a world where everyone has TSA PreCheck is actually the ideal situation!

Check out our full guide to TSA PreCheck here to see how much time and effort you can save at the security checkpoint during your travels.

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TBF, that’s a very light day at DEN….

So at the end, he’s just saying he wants security to go back to how it was pre-9/11?

I assume you have Gobal Entry not PreCheck. So you certainly get value from the program. And you likely got it free from a credit card. So you are saying you are irritated when the TSA chooses efficiency over paying tribute to your status as a person who filled out an application and went to a five minute appointment? I like status. I like my hotel status. I like my airline status. But TSA PreCheck isn’t a status. It’s intended to make screening faster and easier for everyone. Reducing unnecessary security measures is in everyone’s interest. I’m sorry your status was cheapened by having other people not have to be annoyed by the TSA. But you seriously need to find another way to feel good about yourself.

Emily .

Joseph paid for Pre Check (whether he got reimbursed from his credit card is irrelevant). He correctly IMHO is a little put out to have paid for something that other people get for free – it’s a pretty normal reaction.

Pre-Check is a “status”. It’s earned by paying the application fee, allowing TSA to undertake a background check and to capture fingerprints. It is certainly meant to speed up processing for everyone but the primary beneficiaries are supposed to those that have paid for it and “passed” the requirements…..

You’re wrong about this and getting personal

This dude literally didn’t even have to wait extra. He’s just pissed that OTHER people didn’t have to wait. That’s incredibly stupid.

I would have been annoyed also! I paid for my TSA status and it certainly took longer than 5 minutes. The appointments at our local airport filled ASAP so I chose to wait in line for a possible opening. Two hours of waiting and I was successful. I authorized a background check and was fully fingerprinted. I paid to use that TSA Precheck security line!!

Amen, Robert. And I’m sure there are plenty like me that did pay for it years ago before the cards all started including the credit benefit once every 4 years. Or at least before I had such a card. 2019 will be my first paid-for Global Entry. For my husband and myself, it was a big decision to agree to fingerprints PLUS we had to make a 3 hour drive for the appointment.

Lol. Three hours? You know you can just walk in to an airport location when you’re flying? All locations take walk-ins “when available” and essentially they are always available. You just have to wait a few extra minutes. And yeah it’s not a status. It is just an ID. That’s like saying your drivers license gives you status and you want all these other people out of your lane!!! Why are people such snobs now? I am so tired of this attitude. Emily is right. Get over it. Just wait. It won’t kill you.