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TSA Pre Check Lines

Seeing the horror stories of the long TSA lines already happening. We are already approved for Global Entry - question - how are the Pre-Check lines? Hopefully shorter? Anyone done this lately?? How long??

TIA!

Posted by
17 posts

Departed from Denver late afternoon May 8. TSA Pre-Check line was very long and only one agent working it. But the other TSA lines were very, very long, It was CU Boulder graduation weekend as well as Mother's Day so it might have been an unusual situation. But that was the longest TSA Pre-Check line that I have ever been in. BTW- I just used Global Entry for the first time from London into LAX and it was awesome! Out the door in less than 5 minutes (no checked baggage).

Posted by
4524 posts

Pre-Check lines are rarely that long and I use O'Hare often and never have had a problem. Even longer lines will move much faster since you don't have to remove shoes, laptops, 311 bag and just go through a metal detector.

Posted by
32 posts

Wow on the global entry!! We, for the 1st time are actually connecting in the US...but have 2 hr window...but for extra $15 for 5 years...seemed worth it!! And if we can be doing anything else than standing in a line...great. BUT, question - how long was long in Denver?? We are just trying to figure our timing. O'Hare to JFK to Malpensa...so technically - Domestic on 1st leg (also a 1st - usually stop over in Europe)...but 2+ hr waits already at O'Hare (reg TSA)...and not even summer yet!!

Posted by
3419 posts

We got Global Entry and TSA Pre-Check several years ago when it first came out. USed to be we could walk straight up to the agent's desk, maybe one other person in front of us. Now we wait as much as (gasp) 10 min. with 15-20 people in front of us (most of this is at the Charlotte NC airport, but also at Las Vegas, Ft. Lauderdale, Dallas, San Diego, and Phoenix). The non-Pre-Check lines at at least three - four times as long and seem to move twice as slow (or slower). Part of that is the easier proceedures, and part is due to most of the Pre-Check travelers are more experiences and know how to do 'it' right/quickly.

Posted by
1804 posts

This is kinda like saying, how's the weather? Answer is, it changes all the time! And not just at different airports, even at different terminals. My wife recently went through LAX and JFK with her Pre Check/Global Entry card and had no trouble. On previous trips on the same itinerary at JFK they put everyone at Delta through hell.

As the saying goes, your mileage may vary. But if you don't have GE, you'll wish you did. Also keep in mind if you have bags, you still have to wait for them like everyone else but supposedly you can "jump the line" to exit baggage claim. Just ask before you do to prevent a mugging.

Posted by
3469 posts

The lines vary depending on day of the week, time of day, what phase the moon is in, and what side of the bed the TSA agents got up on that day. :-)

But as long as the Pre Check lanes are open and the regular lanes are not completely empty, they will be faster than the regular lines at that airport.

My main complaint is if you are connecting on a return from an international flight, there is never Pre Check or any other type of expedited TSA check between the Immigration and Customs check and the rest of the airport. This is very slow, and very frustrating. I make it through Global Entry in less than 5 minutes every time only to stand in the TSA area for up to an hour, or even more now, if I have a connection to make. A lot of times, I exit as if I am a non connecting passenger and then go through the regular TSA check area so I have Pre Check speed (if my international connection boarding pass has Pre on it, a lot of times it doesn't).

Posted by
1970 posts

SeaTac this week - lines were b-a-d. With Pre-check I was through in under 10 minutes. My boarding passes from Alaska are coming with a new warning about arriving extra early due to long TSA lines at SeaTac.

LAX this week - lines looked about average - maybe a 25 minute wait?? With my TSA Pre-check I was through in under 5.

Posted by
17 posts

The wait on Sunday in Denver was less than 15 minutes in the TSA pre-check line. The non-pre check lines looked like a 45 minute wait (at least). It was not a long wait for me it was just the first time I ever experienced a wait of any kind in the pre-check lane. Usually I just walk up to the agent or maybe see 4 or 5 people ahead of me. I think TSA has done a good job of advertising the pre-check option and more and more people are using it. It is still far better than the regular security lines.

Posted by
10048 posts

Also keep in mind it depends on the airline you are flying.

Technically, TSA Pre-Check is only offered to passengers on most U.S. and Canadian airlines. And even if flying one of the "approved" airlines, it doesn't mean you will automatically get Pre-Check. You won't know until you get your boarding pass.

I flew BA three weeks ago and no Pre-Check.

And in case anyone is interested, the airport code for Tampa is TPA. TIA, besides meaning thanks in advance, is the airport code for Tirana, Albania.

Posted by
250 posts

Mark, are you saying TSA pre-check will not help people returning to the U.S. with a 1:25 connection? Atlanta is where I need a Global Entry card (if I can get one) because of immigration, customs, and bag re-check.

When the pre-check program was rolled out, I read it is limited to people who are frequent flyers on certain airlines. For me that airline is Southwest - which, of course, was not an option for flying internationally. Has this changed to allow infrequent Delta flyers to get GE cards for international travel?

Posted by
3537 posts

Global entry, TSA precheck are open to anyone who completes the application, pays the fee, and successfully meets the requirements.

The best bargain, if you live in a border state with Canada so you can access interview locations easily, is the NEXUS card. $50 for 5 years, and it includes Global entry and TSA precheck. I originally applied for quicker border crossings by car and was delighted to find I had the other benefits as well. I probably use the TSA precheck far more often than the NEXUS lane.

Posted by
5657 posts

See for yourself:
http://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/mytsa/

SFO PreCheck example:
http://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/mytsa/wait_times_detail.aspx
Sunday 9am PDT:
T-2 Area D TSA Pre✓®
21-30 min
Posted 10:54 AM EDT - Today
T-3 Area F (68-90) TSA Pre✓®
No Wait
Posted 9:39 AM EDT - Today
T-3 (Gates 72-73)
No Wait
Posted 8:27 AM EDT - Today
International G TSA Pre✓®
1-10 min
Posted 8:39 PM EDT - 1 Days ago
T-3 Area F (68-90) TSA Pre✓®
21-30 min
Posted 6:06 PM EDT - 1 Days ago
International G TSA Pre✓®
No Wait
Posted 5:03 PM EDT - 1 Days ago
International A TSA Pre✓®
No Wait
Posted 12:07 PM EDT - 1 Days ago
International A TSA Pre✓®
No Wait
Posted 10:45 AM EDT - 1 Days ago
T-3 Area F (68-90) TSA Pre✓®
11-20 min
Posted 9:31 AM EDT - 1 Days ago
International A TSA Pre✓®
No Wait
Posted 6:58 PM EDT - 2 Days ago

Posted by
374 posts

Along with the weather, the phase of the moon and TSA agents' moods, the luck of the draw can sometimes be a determining factor in how long one waits in line. While in the regular security line for a flight to Budapest two years ago, a TSA agent at IAD "graduated" me, as he jovially proclaimed, to the pre-check line. A totally random happenstance. The whole process took but a couple of minutes.

Posted by
4524 posts

Mark, are you saying TSA pre-check will not help people returning to the U.S. with a 1:25 connection? Atlanta is where I need a Global Entry card (if I can get one) because of immigration, customs, and bag re-check.
When the pre-check program was rolled out, I read it is limited to people who are frequent flyers on certain airlines. For me that airline is Southwest - which, of course, was not an option for flying internationally. Has this changed to allow infrequent Delta flyers to get GE cards for international travel?

Several issues to answer here. First, understand there are several programs with different benefits.
TSA Pre-Check only allows for the PreCheck lines at US airports if flying a participating airline.

Global Entry - Allows for expedited re-entry into the US and also provides the TSA PreCheck.

Nexus - Allows for expedited US-Canada border crossings as well as TSA PreCheck.

You MUST enroll in one of those programs and then provide your Traveler ID number to your airlines. They print your PreCheck status on your boarding pass.

PreCheck and the other programs have nothing to do with frequent flyer programs. Those with elite status do usually get it as part of their status, but anyone with a clean record can apply and get enrolled.

Posted by
12551 posts

Traveling Woman, I think you understand the program, now will it help? Probably. We fly with Global Entry/PreCheck and generally speaking it provides some edge. Oddly enough the edge is more in the Customs line than Passport control if you have checked luggage because it can take so long to retrieve the luggage that the non-global entry folks generally catch up with us. If you have a tight connection like that you might want to consider just carry on or be willing to abandon your luggage (the airlines will forward it if no one steals if off the carrousel)

Posted by
3469 posts

Traveling Woman,

In my recent experience, TSA Pre does NOT help with tight connections on international flights if you go through the connections area security check to get to that connecting flight simply because there is no Pre lane in those areas, at least in the airports I have been through. I have not gone through Atlanta and I try to avoid due to previous unacceptable experiences there. Others have reported there are Pre lanes in the connections areas at some airports. Global Entry does help because it only takes a minute or two to answer the questions at the kiosk and get your receipt printed out which allows you to basically skip the entire line.

Any one can now get TSA Pre or Global Entry by going through the application process and paying the fees. The previous program of Pre Check being given to high level frequent flyers is over and while you may still occasionally get flagged to go through the Pre lane, there is no guarantee and less and less chance of it as the lines get longer from people signing up. The biggest concern is does the airline you are flying participate in TSA Pre. If that airline does not, you do not get to go through the Pre lane. Global Entry is not tied to the airline, it is simply electronically added to your US passport allowing you to use the GE kiosks at airports to go through the fast lane for immigration and customs. The Global Entry card is only used when traveling back from Canada or Mexico in a car. If you fly, you will always need your passport.

Posted by
10048 posts

Kaeleku, Yes, I know which airlines are part of the Pre-Check program.

I wrote that only certain U.S. and Canada airlines are part of it and used my flight on British Airways as an example where I didn't get it because it's not part of the program.

However, I did get BA Fast Track security and that was even faster than Pre-Check. I was the only one going through at the time. Shoes had to come off but that was about it.

Surprisingly, my brother, who flies Jet Blue a couple of times a year, and has never signed up for any program, always gets TSA Pre-Check on his boarding pass.

Posted by
95 posts

@Carol,

you say Nexus is $50 for 5 years, good for border entry to US from Canada or Mexico, but is it good for other ports of entry, like SFO, JFK? I applied for GE the moment they annouced the program, and am now interested in using Nexus when my GE expires, since Nexus is so much cheaper, plus I live not far from a Canadian border. Just want to make sure it is usable in ALL ports of entry to the US.

Please, if anyone knows, reconfirm if it is thus so. Thanks!

Posted by
2525 posts

My understanding is that Nexus is valid for travel between Canada and the U.S., while Global Entry is valid for entry into the U.S. from all nations. I love Global Entry.

Posted by
367 posts

I have also gotten Pre check each of the last 4 times I have flown and not signed up for it. But what gets me is getting there 3 hours early for an international flight and the check in is not available for the flight until 2 hours before the flight leaves. That has happened to me twice. Hopefully that will change.

Posted by
95 posts

It happened to my friend this past Sunday. We kept telling her and her husband how long the lines were at DTW, so better arrive early so they would not miss their international flight. They arrived at 2:00p.m. for a 6:00p.m. flight, but the check-in counter was not open until 4:00 p.m.So, no use getting there too early, still have to check in first before going through TSA.

Posted by
95 posts

Barbara:

As I understand, some airlines used to give free pre-checks to their frequent milers, as a "taste" for applying TSA PreCheck, but they no longer do that, at least by Delta Airlines. Maybe you were lucky then.

Posted by
95 posts

Okay, I went and checked. So, Bruce is correct. With Nexus one gets same clearance as GE only if entering from pre clearanced CANADIAN international airports, does not apply to USA international airports. Maybe that is why it is half of GE cost. That makes sense.

Just want to find out from our Canadian neighbors who have Nexus if they were able to enter US by using GE kiosks in American international airports when returning from other countries besides Canada? Did the machine request to go to the regular line?

Posted by
95 posts

After hearing evening news reports on all the long, long lines at TSA precheck stations, it seems that even if one DOES show up early, it would be useless if the check-in counter is either not open, or won't let you check-in earlier than two hrs prior to flight . The airlines should let passengers check-in earlier so that they can have more time to wait for security checks. Wonder if they are doing that now. Of course, they should add more TSA security checkers and have more lanes available.

Posted by
3537 posts

sskfh31 and Bruce; You are giving out some wrong information. Nexus comes with global entry at any airport in the United States that has Global Entry services available, regardless of what country you are entering from.

I have certainly used it in Houston arriving from France.

Nexus provides all three of these features: Expedited land border crossings with Canada; TSA pre-check; global entry services. There are no geographic limitations on Global Entry. It is the same program.

Posted by
95 posts

Carol ,
thank you for letting us know that Nexus is usable at all entry points to the USA, and entering from other foreign countries. Up to this point no one with Nexus has volunteered that information. In fact, I am rather happy to learn this, as I am planning to apply to it once my GE expires, since it is more economical. Living not far from the Canadian border, I know Nexus has been around for years before there was Global Entry, mainly to expedite crossing the border between Canada and USA, and between Mexico and the US. However, it is not common knowledge that it expedites entry from other countries as well, plus can be used at any US international airport.

Thank you for the clarification.

Posted by
95 posts

Carol,
One more question. Is the procedure the same as applying for GE in the US, except one has to cross the border to do it and costs less? I understand they have their own application forms and all that, but do you pay in Canadian dollars, too? Just wondering.

Posted by
3469 posts

Straight from the US Customs and Border Protection web site:

"NEXUS
The NEXUS program allows pre-screened travelers expedited processing when entering the United States and Canada. Program members use dedicated processing lanes at designated northern border ports of entry, NEXUS kiosks when entering Canada by air and Global Entry kiosks when entering the United States via Canadian Preclearance airports. NEXUS members also receive expedited processing at marine reporting locations. You cannot use your NEXUS card at Global Entry kiosks outside of Canadian Preclearance locations."

So not sure how this equates to being exactly the same as Global Entry since Nexus specifically is for Canadian border crossing only and works both directions while GE works only for returning into the US.

Posted by
95 posts

Mrs.EB:

Sorry, I meant having the check-in counter open to check-in luggage. I just had a friend leaving this past Sunday on Air Canada from DTW, who arrived at the airport very early so that she would have ample time for security lines, but found out Air Canada would only let them check-in ( luggage drop off) 2 hours before flight, not earlier. So, she had to wait 2 hours just to check-in her luggage, and then line up for security, which was a long line . I am sure she would have missed her flight under such circumstances, but she lucked out because her plane was delayed anyway.

Posted by
95 posts

Forgot to add, it was an international flight, so don't you check in at the counter because they need to see if you have a valid passport? And check that the passport is definitely yours. I thought for international flights you have to stop at the counter for verification.

Posted by
256 posts

We just flew through Dulles and were shuttled into "pre checked" All I know is that we got a red stamp and a check mark on our boarding pass. You aren't suppose to have to remove shoes etc. but it took my husband 5 tries to get through the check point. He didn't realize he had a PENNY in one of the pockets of his cargo shorts. It was fast at 6:30 in the morning at Washington. We also got "pre check" coming through St Thomas V.I. airport and it seemed to move. I still am not sure what it is!!!!!!!!

Posted by
339 posts

Just some information about signing up for TSA PreCheck. I filled out the online application on Sunday. On Monday I went to 2 centers locally to get fingerprinted. One said without an appointment, would definitely not get in. Appointments every 10 minutes. Went to a different center just in time for all the walk in people to get up and leave (they had been waiting for 4 hours). So I signed in and waited and one appointment was 2 minutes late so I was able to get in after only being there an hour.

Needless to say, appointments are a good idea, but it was a month before I would be able to get an appointment so I thought I would wing it. So that was Monday. Tuesday night I got an email with my KTN (known travelers number) which I emailed to my airlines (domestic) for travel in June.

I have randomly gotten precheck on boarding passes in the past, last time in February and it was a big time saver. We'll see how this works out. I had considered Global Entry but would have had to travel a greater distance to do it.

Posted by
9363 posts

@sskfh, yes, you have to check in at the desk for an international flight so that they can see your passport. On my most recent trip, I flew from home to Atlanta, then on to Madrid. I actually stopped at the desk at our small airport to ask if I they needed to see me, since I already had my boarding pass. They said, no, go ahead. But as I was called to board, they stopped me because I had not shown them my passport. Luckily, they just looked at it there instead of sending me back.

Posted by
3537 posts

Mark,
When you arrive at a US entry point that is not on the Canadian border, you are not using your Nexus card to enter. You are using the global entry that you were given at the same time as your Nexus card. This is connected to your passport. Yes, you can't use your Nexus card at all entries BUT!! you just use your passport which provides global entry services at all entrances because you have gone through the Nexus card process.

I saw the quote you were working off of and can understand why that caused some confusion. The fact is that Nexus card holders that TSA pre-check and global entry in addition to their Nexus Cards.

Posted by
3537 posts

@sskfh31 Global entry and TSA pre-check come with the Nexus card. The global entry is connected to your passport and works at other points of entry other than the Canadian border area. As I mentioned earlier, I used global entry without any difficulty in Houston last summer.

I only use the Nexus card itself for crossing the Canadian border by land or sea. I use the trusted traveler number on the back to access TSA pre-check and Global Entry is linked to my passport because of the Nexus card.

I applied and paid through the US site in US dollars. I did my interview at the US border station at Blaine, but spoke to representatives from both the US and Canada. Then, because I wanted to do the retinal scan, I had to cross over to the Canadian side where they had the machine. I spent about 45 minutes total in the interviews and for the scan.

Posted by
3469 posts

Carol,

I applied for Global Entry and currently have it. It has been great for the traveling I do.

As part of Global Entry, I received a Global Entry Card I can use when returning from Canada and Mexico by land crossing so I can use the expedited or Nexus lanes, and a TSA Pre Check membership through the trusted traveler ID number. It cost $100 and is good for 10 years. People from multiple foreign countries can also apply and be granted GE. Only the US has to approve this.

Nexus is only $50. When you apply for Nexus, both the US and Canada must approve you. You can use your Nexus card to enter Canada as well as return back to the US. You get TSA Pre, and apparently it does give you the equivalent of Global Entry (if you provide your fingerprints to the CBP). Only US and Canadian citizens can get Nexus.

So why then is Nexus only half the price? Is it that difficult for just anyone to get the Canadian approval for Nexus? Logically, since there is more government involvement to get Nexus you would think it would cost more. But like most government programs, logic doesn't seem to apply. I just noticed that Nexus is only good for 5 years before needing renewal, guess that means it is basically the same price as the 10 year Global Entry.

Posted by
925 posts

I just noticed that Nexus is only good for 5 years before needing renewal, guess that means it is basically the same price as the 10 year Global Entry.

Global Entry is also good for 5 years, not 10.

Posted by
95 posts

Mark and Carol:
Thank you for providing further feedback. I , actually entire family, have GE, but once we got it we heard about Nexus having the same privileges but at a lower cost. That is why I am trying to find out why there is a difference, if any. Logically, if it is cheaper by half, there must be something missing from the more expensive GE. I am considering applying for Nexus once my GE expires, just hope that they don't increase the cost when I do apply in a few years. Both GE and Nexus are for five years, so timelength doesn't factor in.
The only difference that I can see, is that with Nexus you can get expedited entry into US and Canada, GE only expedites entry to the USA ( upon return). This is definitely an added bonus.
Now, I have another question, which involves Mexico....Nexus also allows entry/exit into Mexico, but if one gets the retinal scan in Canada, not Mexico, can you still have expedited entry into Mexico? Or, do they (Canada and Mexico) share the same info? Just want to make sure I understand before the situation occurs, like lining up in the Nexus lane crossing into Mexico.
Thank you again for clarifying.

Posted by
1767 posts

Based on what I have seen Nexus does not automatically get you Global Entry if you are returning from Europe to the US. So if you only go to and from Canada it's great, but for most people on here it's not the solution. While the confusing info on the Customs site makes it sound like you can use the GE lines anyplace if you aren't on a flight from Canada you may get "bumped" back to the regular lines. You can use the kiosks, but ...... the lines may not be shorter (happened to a man next to me at ALT over Christmas. When he started complaining the agent looked at his card and said "sorry sir that's only good for Canada and you are coming from Paris")

https://www.cbp.gov/travel/trusted-traveler-programs/nexus

And to an earlier poster. Southwest Airlines now participates in pre-check. Put your GOES number in your profile and you are good to go.

Posted by
95 posts

EXACTLY! Doesn't make much sense to us, but maybe airlines don't want passengers to check in luggage too early, since the airlines will have to hold it in some holding area, maybe they don't want mixups to happen. Maybe they need more space to hold luggage for different flights. Even with carryon luggage, one would still have to go to the counter, (not only to drop off the luggage), but to have them check passports. Lucky for her, the lines were not terribly, terribly long because it was on Sunday , not a very busy travel day, and her plane was delayed. Airlines probably don't realize they also create bottleneck delays with their policies; and probably TSA doesn't realize that there are these bottlenecks in place. How can they be made aware of this? More important, what can we do to about this?

Posted by
95 posts

Nancy, " I have certainly used it in Houston arriving from France"..... I had to re-read your posting, and realized it was HOUSTON.....isn't that a border international airport with Mexico? Correct me if I am wrong, since I have not flown in internationally through Houston. As the Nexus site says, it (Nexus) can be used coming into USA from Canada and Mexico. But, of course, you flew in from France. Maybe Houston is one of those airports that allow Nexus users to gain entry to the US. I mean, not the actual Nexus card, but the global entry that is encoded in your passport. If you return via another airport that doesn't border Canada or Mexico, would you be able to use it in the GE kiosks? Normally GE entry is done through the GE kiosks with the passport, then you go to the immigration booth to hand the slip to the immigration officer, and you are through. Have you been through some other international airport that does not border Canada or Mexico, and was able to use the global entry (provided by Nexus) encoded in your passport to enter the US? Would like to know if it worked then.

Posted by
95 posts

Carol -- you said earlier " As I mentioned earlier, I used global entry without any difficulty in Houston last summer....." AND " Based on what I have seen Nexus does not automatically get you Global Entry if you are returning from Europe to the US..........while the confusing info on the Customs site makes it sound like you can use the GE lines any place if you aren't on a flight from Canada you may get "bumped" back to regular lines. You can use kiosks, but the lines may be shorter (happened to a man next to me at ATL over Christmas. When he started complaining the agent looked at his card and said "sorry sir, that's only good for Canada and you are coming from Paris")."
So, like Nancy, you were able to enter through HOUSTON by using the global entry provided by Nexus, but that gentleman was not able to enter through ATL by using his Nexus card. Maybe he could have used the GE kiosks and his global entry encoded passport instead of showing his Nexus card to the agent?

Posted by
95 posts

MrsEB: if you read back one post above mine, Barbara from Walnut Creek, CA on 5/17/16 10:54 quoted " But what gets me is getting there 3 hours early for an international flight and the check in is not available for the flight until 2 hours before the flight leaves. That has happened to me twice."
So, it seems it happens with other international flights, not only Air Canada.

BTW, how do you do blocked quotes? I am tired of typing every quote . If you don't mind sending a private msg, I would appreciate it. Thanks!

Posted by
1767 posts

"Carol -- you said earlier " As I mentioned earlier, I used global entry without any difficulty in Houston last summer....." AND " Based on what I have seen Nexus does not automatically get you Global Entry if you are returning from Europe to the US..........while the confusing info on the Customs site makes it sound like you can use the GE lines any place if you aren't on a flight from Canada you may get "bumped" back to regular lines. You can use kiosks, but the lines may be shorter (happened to a man next to me at ATL over Christmas. When he started complaining the agent looked at his card and said "sorry sir, that's only good for Canada and you are coming from Paris")."|

The first Carol was from Washington, the second is from Atlanta. :) I didn't say the first statement but did the 2nd.

So I didn't post two different things, there are just two (or more) Carols on here :)

I have GE and not Nexus as I have not been to Canada in years.

Posted by
3696 posts

I always fly out of DTW and on occasion when I had flown a smaller airline (not a Detroit hub) they did not open the counter till 2 hours before the flight, but if you are flying Delta the counters are always open. I often get to the airport really early so I can work or avoid traffic and can always check in whenever I get there. So... it does depend on which airline you fly and which airport.

Posted by
928 posts

Highlight the sentences you wish to quote. Then click the bolded
quotation marks below the words "Add Reply". Look at the Preview
window and you'll see the indentation. Hope this helps!

Aaah, it worked, but one minor clarification (because I'm too literal). Copy and paste the part you want to quote into your new reply window. THEN proceed as instructed above.

Posted by
95 posts

To Carol from Atlanta, my apologies for my mistake. I did not realize there are 2 Carols, and I did not mean to point conflicting statements. Will pay more attention to where each person is from..

To MrsEB, thank you for sharing how to quote blocks. Someone else also provided instructions in another thread, and I realized I couldn't do it by using a tablet (no wonder!l), but need a mouse and a computer. Will have to switch . Thank you again.

Posted by
95 posts

Terry Kathryn :
It is true that Delta usually has manned counters open most of the time, since DTW is its hub. However the non-hub international airlines may not be open early enough to enable passengers to check in/ verify passport/ drop luggage earlier and thus allowing them to get thru TSA in ample time. They should change that.

Posted by
256 posts

We just experienced this last week. We were at a small airport out of the country. We made sure we were there early, but no one showed up at the counter(United) until about 2 and 1/2 hours before we were to board. I'm not sure if TSA was there before,couldn't see behind the counters.. Our flight was one of the first to leave at 1:10. I guess I can understand about the airlines not wanted to store bags but there has got to be some common sense solution someplace. With what happened to the Paris flight yesterday,I'm not sure more TSA is the answer. We are flying domestic in August and am wondering if it's worse as far as making a connection? Internationally, we usually don't have a problem.

Posted by
14412 posts

Even if the counters are open, it's possible they can't check you in until they've opened the flight. I don't know what the norm is in the U.S., but in Israel and in Europe, I've often had to wait to check in even though the airlines counters are open.

Posted by
250 posts

To sskth: Checking in is done online as usual, but you have to provide your passport information. Then when you check your bag, you show your passport instead of a state ID or driver's license. That was my experience.

Posted by
1 posts

The important thing to remember about NEXUS vs Global Entry vs pre-Check is that all 3 assign you a KNOWN TRAVELER NUMBER. This is the number that is given to airlines to put on your ticket and boarding passes that security will look at and allow you to use the pre-check. It is good for all airports in the US. Where NEXUS and Global Entry come into use is only for customs and border crossings. NEXUS gives you the same benefits as global entry into the US. NEXUS gives you the additional benefit if you are travelling internationally into Canada (say from Germany to Canada) as NEXUS terminals can be used. This is a Canadian Program that the US is participating in. It is also half the cost of Global Entry. The only thing is that for the interview it needs to be either done in Canada or in a select few US Border locations. I live in Washington State so I have the option of either going to the border (Blaine, WA) or Seattle, WA (SEATAC Airport or Boeing Field). Here is from the US Customs and Border Patrol Website:

TSA Pre✓®
Are You Eligible?
NEXUS members are eligible to participate in TSA Precheck Logo. U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents enrolled in Global Entry or SENTRI are also eligible to participate in TSA Precheck Logo.
How It Works
If you are a NEXUS member or eligible Global Entry or SENTRI member, enter your membership number (PASS ID) in the “Known Traveler Number” field when booking reservations, or enter it into your frequent flyer profile with the airline. The membership number enables Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Secure Flight System to verify that you are a legitimate CBP Trusted Traveler and eligible to participate in TSA Precheck Logo.
Where You Can Find Your Membership Number
You can find your Trusted Traveler member number by logging into your Global Online Enrollment System (GOES) account. Your membership number is listed toward the bottom of the page. Your membership number is also located on the back of your Trusted Traveler card in the upper-left corner.
What is TSA Pre✓®?
The TSA Precheck Logo program expedites traveler screening through TSA security checkpoints. For a complete list of participating airports in TSA Precheck Logo or for more information, visit www.tsa.gov or call the TSA Contact Center at 1-866-289-9673.

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Minneman,
You sound like you have Nexxus. Have you been able to enter the States through ports that are not US-Canada borders? For example, have you entered the US (gone through immigration check points) through Chicago or San Francisco by using your Nexxus in GE express lanes?

Thank you for replying.