Home Airports Airports In FL, NYC, CA, TX and WA Have “Skip The TSA Lines” Options This Holiday

Airports In FL, NYC, CA, TX and WA Have “Skip The TSA Lines” Options This Holiday

by SharonKurheg

Airports across the country are reporting passenger numbers that are nearly as large as 2019, the last “normal” year we had before COVID. With that, lines at the TSA security checkpoints, especially at the larger and more popular airports, are LONG.

To help decrease wait times, a few airports have been experimenting with reservation systems so passengers can enter the line at a set time, rather than wait in queues for upwards of 45 minutes or more.

During the holiday season, 6 airports across the country, one each in Florida, California, Texas and Washington, and 2 in the NYC area, are offering such services:

Florida

Back in October, CLEAR launched a pilot program for a TSA virtual queue at Orlando International Airport (MCO). It’s called Reservation Lane, it’s still running, and it’s FREE! It doesn’t get you through the regular CLEAR Plus queue, but it does get you past the bulk of the TSA wait. Click here for more information.

New York City

Newark-Liberty

The Port Authority of NY & NJ has introduced what they’re calling VirtuaLine at Newark-Liberty International Airport (EWR). From EWR’s website:

If you are traveling from Terminal A at Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR), you can experience expedited screening for free! Our VirtuaLine reservations program allows you to make a reservation on the TSA security screening line up to 72 hours before you get to the airport or while you are in the terminal.

Virtual queue is available daily from 4 A.M. to 8 P.M. at EWR Terminal A. Slots are limited, and may book up fast, so they recommend booking up to 72 hours in advance of your flight. It’s not available for those with TSA PreCheck or CLEAR (but let’s face it – their lines are pretty short anyway) but could be a huge time saver for those who would normally go on the regular line (and it doesn’t look as if it’s gotten a whole lot of publicity yet, either). This program is not a trial run – it’s permanent and currently FREE. Click here for more info.

LaGuardia

After years of planning, construction at LGA began in 2016. Continued traffic, along with construction made gridlock so bad that some people have actually left their cars and walked to the airport to ensure they didn’t miss their plane.

However the airport’s Terminal B opened about a year and a half ago and it’s just gorgeous (here – take a look!). Since last month, travelers flying out of Terminal B have been able to take advantage of what’s called their “B-Fast” program. Heads up that it’s not free – it costs $15 per person. Here’s more info about it.

California

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is in the midst of a reservation trial, as well. It launched on October 21 and will run through January 18th, which means it could be helpful during the busy holiday season. The program is called LAX Fast Lane and allows passengers who are flying out of Terminals 7 and 8 to reserve a time at the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screening area through a new pilot program called LAX Fast Lane.

LAX says the service provides the same high standard of security as all TSA lanes. However like the other “skip the line ” programs, guests who participate in other trusted traveler programs, such as TSA PreCheck®, will not be able to use their benefits in the LAX Fast Lane. More information about this service can be found on this page.

Texas

Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) began a trial run of what they’re calling Fast Pass, back in mid-September. The trial is still ongoing – click here for more info.

Washington

Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) has bragging right as, not only the first airport to rial run a reservation system (all the way back in May), but also the first to make it a permanent thing. SEA’s “SEA Spot Saver” virtual queue program ended on August 31st and over 95% of the program’s users thought it was easy to use and saved them time. It became permanent about 2 weeks later – more info about it can be found here.

Hey, what about Boston?

Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) ran its virtual security line pilot program from April to June of 2021. No word if it will come back as a permanent fixture.

Traipsing through an airport during the holiday season is a pain. If you’re going to be flying out of these airports during the time their queue reservations are running, it might be a good idea to take advantage of it.

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

2 comments

Pierre December 20, 2021 - 2:55 pm

Great planning that every airport uses a different name for the service. Not confusing at all for the casual traveler the service is aimed at…

Reply
SharonKurheg December 20, 2021 - 3:59 pm

I guess that, except for the fact that they’re all airports, they’re all run by different places and each does their own thing.

Reply

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