Travelers hope new TSA screening program means shorter lines

Holiday travelers hope new TSA screening program means shorter security lines

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Knoxville's McGhee Tyson Airport is relying on TSA's new screening program to help cut down on security lines for holiday travelers. Knoxville's McGhee Tyson Airport is relying on TSA's new screening program to help cut down on security lines for holiday travelers.
Aimed at frequent, low-risk flyers, the Pre-Check launched in October at more than 60 airports across the country, spreading to more than 100 just this week. Aimed at frequent, low-risk flyers, the Pre-Check launched in October at more than 60 airports across the country, spreading to more than 100 just this week.
"I think it's awesome," said Betty Holtz. "We've already had one Christmas. We're going to go back and have the other Christmas." "I think it's awesome," said Betty Holtz. "We've already had one Christmas. We're going to go back and have the other Christmas."

By HAYLEY HARMON
6 News Anchor/Reporter

ALCOA (WATE) - With Christmas almost upon us, it's going to be a busy week for airports across the country.

Knoxville's McGhee Tyson Airport is relying on TSA's new screening program to help cut down on security lines for holiday travelers.

Betty Holtz, who was flying out of Knoxville Monday, is one of those millions of Americans just trying to get home for the holidays.

"We're waiting to get a flight out," said Holtz. "We're going to go to Charlotte and then from Charlotte, we're going to go to Syracuse, New York, which is our hometown."

Flying with her husband and 7-year-old grandson, she looks for any chance to cut down on wait times. That's why she's so thankful for TSA's new Pre-Check Program.

"I think it's awesome," said Holtz. "We've already had one Christmas. We're going to go back and have the other Christmas."

Aimed at frequent, low-risk flyers, the Pre-Check launched in October at more than 60 airports across the country, spreading to more than 100 just this week.

Those who sign up for the $85 service get to bypass the main security line and go through a separate one, which is good news for people like Betty Holtz.

"Because it is the holidays, the lines are very long and we were able to get through the lines a lot faster. There was no wait," said Holtz.

They also don't have to take their shoes, jackets or belt off, their laptops out or their approved liquids from their carry-on bag.

"It's a lot easier not having to worry about your belts and your jackets and your shoes," said Holtz.

McGhee Tyson officials say it helped out with lines tremendously during Thanksgiving, and they believe it will do the same for Christmas.

"It is very beneficial because even the travelers that aren't signed up with Pre-Check still benefit from it because the travelers that are in Pre-Check aren't in their line, so this is very good for us this season," said Caitlin Newman, spokesperson for McGhee Tyson Airport.

Currently, only major airlines participate in the program. At McGhee Tyson, that includes Delta, United, American Airlines and US Airways.

For information on how to enroll in the TSA Pre-Check Program, visit their website.

United States citizens can sign up online, but also have to go to an enrollment center to verify their identity and provide fingerprints.

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