Tucson, Ariz. (October 16, 2013)- Airline passengers can now take advantage of expedited PreCheck screening lanes at Tucson International Airport that don't require them to take off their shoes and belts or open their laptop cases.
The Transportation Security Administration this week opened a PreCheck lane on the B Concourse at the airport during peak morning hours. A second PreCheck, on the A Concourse, should be open by the end of October.
Currently, the expedited screening program is available to U.S. citizens who have been pre-approved through the frequent flier programs of participating airlines, which at Tucson International Airport are: Alaska, American, Delta, United and US Airways. It's anticipated that Southwest Airlines will also become a participant in the program in the next two months.
The expedited screening lanes are also available to members of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection's Trusted Traveler programs, including Global Entry and SENTRI, which is used to cross the border with Mexico.
Before the end of this year, the TSA plans to launch a program that will allow others to apply for PreCheck. That process will have an online enrollment system where travelers can submit an application and pay an $85 fee. As part of the process, applicants will be required to go to an airport enrollment center to verify their identity and provide their fingerprints.
Once vetted, a process that is expected to take two to three weeks, successful applicants will receive a Known Traveler Number which they can use for airline reservations for five years.
The TSA has also begun randomly selecting some travelers who've been vetted to use the PreCheck lanes.
The PreCheck program has been operational at 40 airports since October 2011. Tucson is among 60 airports that were added to the program in September.
"We pride ourselves on making the travel experience through TIA as easy and stress-free as possible," said Bonnie Allin, president and CEO of the Tucson Airport Authority. "Working in cooperation with the TSA, these PreCheck lanes are another step to enhancing our customers' experience."