No, I am not speaking about France, Italy or Greece -- but the USA.
As a Delta nearly Diamond Medallion, I have ALWAYS gotten international pre-check since they started it about 7 months ago. I was always told it was because certain airlines validated your status.
But then the TSA (and the US government) decided to sell pre-check to all and every bidder who paid for it. Guess what? I checked in for my flight to Europe tomorrow and no TSA Pre-Check showed up on my ticket. I called the first person at Delta who was clueless. The second time I called I spoke to a supervisor. He told me the government has taken charge of pre-check (as opposed to the airlines sponsoring it in the past) and that people who are paying the fees to get through pre-check are getting priority. He apologized, but could do nothing.
This is the only time since int'l precheck that it has not shown up on my ticket, despite 100,000 miles this year, all international.
So tell me, please, is TSA interested in security or is the government interested in money from those willing to pay for it? The answer seems clear to me. Contrary to past experience, the Delta supervisor said he could not override the new governmental rules -- and when I said I guess "money rules" he said he thought I was right.
This is an outrage. I despise the TSA in any case because of the horrible experiences I've had with them, but for the US government to sell to the highest bidders easy access makes it a big joke on all of us -- and possibly much, much worse.
Last weekend my wife and I flew on South West, PHX/HOU/BKG and we had TSA Pre on all of our boarding passes. We have not enrolled in the TSA Precheck program, even though I tried to. I could not find any place on the internet to enroll in Precheck. I did find Global Entry and I have gone ahead and enrolled in that, since it was only $15 more than Precheck and I can bypass customs if I happen to do any international travel. Now, I just have to wait for my in person interview in early Feb 2014. The SWA magazine on the plane said that TSA controlled the selection of Precheck passengers.
While I am not saying you're incorrect, I've had quite a bit more than 10 flights this year domestically and at every airport where Pre-Check was offered I got it, 100%.
I agree with profchiara, this will turn into a joke created by the highest bidder and we all will suffer......call it TSA Care.
I'm sure my response will be unpopularly met, but I agree with Jerryl. They do in fact randomly force pre-check flyers into the regular line. It happened to me recently. It is for additional security, and though I don't appreciate it (I am now officially spoiled) it makes sense to me (insofar as the methods that the U.S. employs for commercial flight security are concerned, agree or not, which is another topic in and of itself certainly, I'm just saying...) If it hasn't happened to anyone here yet, it is because the key word is random.
I think the Delta supervisor's explanation regarding paid priority was simply incorrect. For both Global Entry and paid TSA pre-check, one does indeed have to pass a background security screening. The random selection back into the regular line for pre-check flyers is for added security in case any "bad guys" slip through the cracks in the pre-check background check. Just my take.
Here's a note from someone who flies infrequently: everyone should have the same TSA shoes off, belt off, laptop out hassle as everyone else. Here's why.
I might be a loner on this, but I believe we all pay something to fly, and are taxed (soon to be more taxed if the congressional budget passes) for a 9-11 fee, and other security fees. To make a distinction, whether it is randomly enforced by making some pass through regular checks, is a bad idea, If we are not going to implement a El Al type system then we're stuck wiith the TSA idea, which also presents problems, in my opinion.
GOES and other paid programs make sense, if you assume (always a mistake) that a person who is trustworthy at the time they apply will always be trustworthy in the future.
Recall that in terms of 20th century and 21st century history, a slew of vetted individuals with a government-issued security clearance, even polygraphs, have become spies. In other words, for some reason they strayed from the path of good behavior at some time for some reason. So, you may be OK at the time you pay for these programs bu how can anyone be sue you're good the day after? No one can.
Thus, if you want security, jettison the pre-check, and make everyone feel the same pain and the same security as the rest of us do.
Security on airlines needs this change and sadly we do not have it.
Ergo the random yanking of passengers back into the "regular" line.
TSA vs. El Al approach is an entirely different discussion.
I was just speaking in terms of the confines of the approach that is currently in place within the U.S. I don't believe that priority access to the "easy" line is automatically granted to those who "pay" for it.
Well when I worried about these kinds of things (as a govie) we worried more about continuous evaluation, rather than one and done. You've been through this with ATC I suppose. It was the feeling that random meant "never" that still bugs me. John Walker, for example, knew that he had a periodic investigation coming up, and he merely crafted a rubber stamp to indicate that it was done, and in the days of paper files, everyone believed it. Aldrich Ames, whom I met (another story) was worried about his poly and the handlers told him to get a good night's rest and he'd be OK. He passed with an asterick, but he passed the exam. My point is that the system must be airtight, and there can be no "well, he or she was OK at time X" in this kind of screening.
This would say that the practices the TSA is following is the right thing when putting babies off planes because their names are the same as those on watch lists, and patting down children and invalids is okay. I vehemently disagree with that.
Also, what good does it do when the southern border is being passed by millions of illegals yearly? How does that address security? And then those same illegals get jobs easier and even get to vote because the voting laws are not secure enough?
What security for the country? More of a hassle for most law-abiding citizens. Innocent until proven guilty? It seems that only the guilty are innocent until proven guilty, a la Boston bombers who should have been on a watch list if they actually weren't.
I too have gotten the TSA PreCheck on my flights for the past few months. But, it didn't matter in Miami when we returned from the Caribbean a couple of weeks ago because it took THREE hours to get through customs and TSA RE-check (why we have to go through TSA again after going through it to board the flight and then customs when returning international is baffling to me).
Funny (NOT)....there were two doors open for customs and two lines open for TSA when we were going through this hassle (monkey see..monkey do I guess) in Miami. I asked a TSA agent (after customs) where the PreCheck line was and she abruptly told me there wasn't one thank you very much.
Good thing I had a 4 hour connection as I used up more than three of them with this stupidity. The TSA guy was barking orders about having boarding passes in your hands or they wouldn't let you through the TSA area. I told him he should have a sign there for all the barking he was doing and he gave me some snide remark....SO....I told him when they install that sign to be sure and put another one above it that says...GILLIGAN'S ISLAND....because every person here has been on a three hour tour and this boat's sinking!! Of course, he told me they were doing the best they could (tersely) and I told him it wasn't good enough. Quite frankly, I don't give a hoot when it comes to their stupidity anymore.
What makes this story even more foolish is that when I finally got through the hassle of customs and TSA I was walking to my connection and there were six (count 'em 1,2,3,4,5,6) TSA agents sauntering down the corridor. One was pushing a table. I get to my gate (walking briskly) and about ten minutes later....here comes the TSA gang by my gate! Whoa Nellie! They STOP at the gate and bring this table and setup to the plane walkway....and what are they doing? Checking bags AGAIN after folks have ALREADY been through the TSA checkpoint!
Worse than that....the plane was LESS than half full! Do ya think those dopes could at least check a plane that has some people on it?? Nope! I had ONE other person in First Class....and there were probably twenty in coach. SIX AGENTS to check that gang of passengers! I walked up to them when they called boarding (they didn't ask to check my carry on computer bag) and threw my bag on their table and said 'go ahead...check it again for the third time today' and began to tell them how stupid there resource management is when I spent three hours in their stupid line and they're re-checking the checkers and......well, you get the gist. They just looked at me and said they didn't need to check my bag and to please board........
What a joke this government is......
I know I'll have drones flying over my house after I post this.......
The whole additional random screening at the gate is stupid. They have a quota to meet, simple as that. I was selected for an additional bag check at the gate at PIT. I was flying home to EWR with my wife on Super Bowl sunday..actually during the game...the flight was an ERJ and had no more than a dozen passengers and wouldn't you know it they chose our flight. Having four agents to check a couple bags on a very low risk flight does not make any sense whatsoever but they have to fill those quotas and that is the easiest way so that's why they do it.
Great tef6178, it certainly will expedite your time with Customs/Immigration. Thankfully we have not had to spend more than maybe 2 minutes to get out of the halls and have avoided filling out the forms while on the plane, that alone makes it worth it all.
I know this doesn't sound like it has anything to do with what you're talking about, but it seems like it to me. It was a power play to show you (and anyone else) not to make waves. (Viva, America!! Land of the brave and the once free.)
Several years ago, I went to a car wash near my home in SC. After putting a $20 bill into the change machine and getting change back for $5, I called the sheriff's office about it when I got home. The sheriff or deputy answering was outraged and was ready to go after them. Then he looked up the owners and told me it was owned by a SCHP officer and I would have to call him myself. He told me he thought I had already called him to get my money back from his wife at the bank and asked me where I lived. I did and like a dodo, I told him where I lived, not even thinking of any retributions.
Within the next several weeks, there were several license checks set up on the country road on which we live.
Police, judges, politicians, company people and now TSA are among those we have to be aware of corruptness. They have the power (and they know it) to try to make our lives miserable if nothing else.
Same here bpelican, over 100.000 miles a year the last four or five years in a row with business back and forth to PHL, DCA and DFW along with pleasure trips. So glad to say this year I won't see 50,000 or 28 segments.
At least all of this year has been for fun not work!! Next year probably down around 35,000 miles, those west coast and Europe trips add up quick while reducing the miles in our accounts for upgrades as we don't get any more Global or Regional Upgrade Certificates.
Until now we've had no TSA issues to speak of this year, now when I lose our lofty status on UA down to Gold we shall see what happens after the stroke of midnight on 12/31/13, as we head off to the BVI in January. I suspect we will be in the Premier Access line for security however: Global Entry will solve any other issues we have coming back into the U.S.
well, know i know...i went straight to the precheck line and was very rudely told i am not precheck since it doesn't say it. she then told me to go down to the other line. i did and asked that agent why not. he asked if i bought precheck and said no, but had been cleared by delta quite some time ago. he added if i had bought it there wouldn't be a problem. my estimation of this agency just keeps going up (not).
Well pre check can be frustrating they are now letting random people in pre check line but I have figured it may not be random. I went thru in Phoenix and it took longer than regular line and noticed that most of non pre check regulars were with families , older people, people in wheel chairs and the common denominator was infrequent travelers they didn't know process to do so it took far too long for each person so my theory is they took people they thought were low risk and put them thru this line and this has happened a couple of times lately