Good news for business travelers in Utah. Certain travelers going out of Salt Lake City International Airport may be able to avoid the hassle of the lengthy security process thanks to the expansion of a new passenger pre-screening initiative.
Salt Lake City International is one of 28 U.S. airports selected to implement the Transportation Security Administration’s PreCheck system in 2012. This comes in place right before the construction of the new airport on the current airport site, expected to start in 2018 to make the airport more accessible and able to handle higher volumes of traffic.
The idea behind the PreCheck is this: by collecting information from people—generally, frequent flyers like those who travel for work— on a voluntary basis prior to a flight, those people will be able to have an expedited security experience to allow the TSA to focus on possible high-risk travelers they know less about. PreCheck is about enhanced security all-around.
The success from a trial period with several airports and airlines persuaded the Department of Homeland Security and the TSA to expand the pre-screening initiative to more airports that are operationally ready. It may be one step closer to permanence, but PreCheck is still in “pilot” mode. (Who says the government isn’t capable of humor?)
While more airlines are expected to join the initiative this year, only frequent flyers with Delta Air Lines will be eligible at the SLC for the PreCheck screening during domestic travel.
Once the TSA determines that you’re eligible following the PreCheck process, the proper information will be embedded on your boarding pass in the barcode. The barcode will be scanned by TSA who will then direct you to a TSA PreCheck lane.
In the PreCheck security lane, the following items would not need to be removed:
- 3-1-1 compliant bag from carry-on
- Laptop from bag
- Light outerwear or jacket
- Belts and shoes
It was noted that the TSA will still do random security checks and no individual will be guaranteed expedited screening.
Combined with the new airport construction, the PreCheck screening is expected to help make flying easier, mitigating the costs and hassles for businesses that require a lot of employee travel.