Legislation recently introduced in the Senate would expand enrollment in the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Precheck program to include travelers who have already passed extensive background checks.
Senators John Thune (R-SD) and Gary Peters (D-MI) proposed the Secure Traveler Act last week in hopes of making it easier for people like law enforcement officers and federal employees with an active security clearance to enroll in TSA PreCheck, thus freeing up resources and minimizing lines at airport security checkpoints.
Eligible travelers would still be required to pay all applicable fees and meet other program requirements to successfully enroll. TSA PreCheck costs $85 for a five-year membership.
“If we can move passengers through TSA checkpoints faster, in an effective and secure way, the travel experience will be better and less stressful, and with shorter lines, it will be safer, too,” Thune said in a statement.
The U.S. Travel Association applauded the proposal, calling it an “important bill.”
“Those serving in positions of public trust have already undergone a stringent vetting process. Eliminating a duplicative background check for these individuals will facilitate Precheck enrollment, helping to reduce wait times and alleviating pressure on an already stretched-thin TSA workforce,” said U.S. Travel Executive Vice President of Public Affairs and Policy Tori Barnes in a statement Friday.
“The expedited screening process requires fewer officers and allows the agency to focus resources on travelers who have not been vetted. Security is, therefore, the main beneficiary of growing Precheck,” Barnes added. “U.S. Travel applauds the bipartisan efforts of Senator John Thune (R-SD) and Senator Gary Peters (D-MI) and is eager to lend its support to Congress to ensure the swift passage of this important bill.”
In February, nine new airlines were added to TSA PreCheck with Qatar Airways joining last month. You can click here to view a full list of the dozens of participating carriers.
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