By Jenn Bernstein
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Many deem the security line at any airport a necessary evil, but imagine if you could go through in just one minute or less.
Certain frequent travelers, specifically those with US Airways, can now do just that at Philadelphia International Airport. Starting Wednesday – the program TSA PreCheck will be available at Terminal C.
“It’s certainly going to speed things through. It looks like I don’t have to take off my shoes,” said frequent traveler Jon Mayer.
Folks will still go through security, but will enjoy expedited screening benefits. You don’t have to take your shoes and belts off, and laptops can remain in carry-ons. There are no required body scans, or pat downs, although members are still
subject to random searches.
“It’s great. I travel every week. This is going to save me hours and hours every month,” said frequent traveler Nancy Rabach.
“It’s Christmas in September!”
So who qualifies? You must be a U.S. Citizen traveling domestically. Certain frequent flyer members of US Airways can head to this line, as well as other participating airlines like Delta, Alaska, United and American Airlines.
If you don’t travel frequently, you can pay $100 to join one of the Customs and Border Protection’s Trusted Travelers programs.
The airlines do not know how TSA chooses the eligible customers within these programs. Airlines do send out e-mails to customers that qualify.
TSA says this is one of many efforts to do what they call risk-based security.
If you travel often – they know you better than others.
“PreCheck enables the TSA to focus our efforts on those people that we know nothing about, and passengers we know are higher risk,” said the TSA’s Deputy Federal Security Director at Philadelphia International Airport.
Philadelphia International is the 24th airport to add TSA PreCheck.