What is it?
TSA PreCheck allows eligible and approved, low-risk travelers to expedite through the security screening process at airports supporting TSA Pre-Check.
There are 370 enrollment locations, many which are located inside airports.
What are the benefits?
Anyone that has been to the airport recently, knows the drill – basically de-wardrobe to go through the scanners. With TSA Pre-check you can go through designated checkpoints without removing:
- Liquids and gels from your carry-on
- Laptop from your bag
- Light outerwear/jacket
While they may not sound like much, if you’ve ever been stuck behind anyone that doesn’t know the TSA screening process, it can be torture to wait when you’re trying to make a flight.
So is it worth it?
While $85 for 5 years of TSA Precheck doesn’t seem like much, it really comes down to how much you travel….or how close you like to cut it getting to the airport for a flight.
What exactly does the $85 fee go to? According to Money Magazine, “Of the $85 fee, $38 goes to the TSA, and the FBI receives $12.50 for handling the criminal background check. MorphoTrust takes $34.50 for each application and has declined to comment on its profits from the program.”
Now if you don’t want to pay the $85 fee, there are some credit cards that will reimburse the cost and several airlines that offer it for free to members at the top tiers of their frequent flier programs.
Previously when I traveled for work and even on personal vacations, one less headache at the airport was worth every penny to me, but what I did experience on multiple locations is smaller airports (Billings, MT for example) and even larger airports during non-peak times (Midway on a Sunday night) did not have pre-check available or it was closed down. When I plan for travel, I take into account TSA Pre-Check, so I felt the crunch when it wasn’t available as I thought it would be.
I would say more times than not, I got on board my flight excited for my next adventure and happy from my hassle free experience, but it may not be the same experience for everyone.
I’d love to hear from you – do you think TSA Pre-check is worth it? What has your experience been?
Ready to sign up? Start your online application and learn more about how to obtain TSA Pre-Check.