TSA May Let Non-Fliers Go to Gates

By | December 9, 2006

USAToday reported on Friday that the TSA is testing whether it can allow people without boarding passes to enter the secure areas at airports. If the test programs at Dallas-Fort Worth and Detroit are considered successful, many airports are fighting for the right to allow others past checkpoints. Thus, those waiting for arrivals would be able to patronize the many airport concessions.

Pittsburgh made a bid to let non-passengers past their checkpoints in 2003 to visit their skymall, and they are hardly alone in desiring the revenue that might be gained. The concern is increased lines at security checkpoints. Interestingly, no one has commented they feel the concern is actually letting the people in.

We feel that anyone who wishes to submit to inspection should be allowed to do so. Currently, IDs and boarding passes are often checked by individuals who are not airline personnel or TSA personnel. We believe IDs and boarding passes should be checked by the airline before boarding the aircraft. We have said this before, and feel it is necessary with the number of people checking in online and avoiding scrutiny. Since gate agents have to check boarding passes anyway, and have been asked to check IDs in the past, it would not significantly hold up boarding.

And finally, in the event of an increased line, the TSA could reserve the right to prioritize or restrict non-ticketed individuals in order to handle overcrowding.

Author: Guru

Guru is the Editor of Flight Wisdom and a long time aviation enthusiast.