Are you tired of getting grabbed in the crotch every time you board an airplane? Well, a change in Transportation Security Administration policy means that you can avoid the grope line — that is, for $85 and a background check.
The TSA announced Monday that the fee-based PreCheck expedited screening process, which was previously only available to frequent fliers of specific airlines, will come available to the general public this fall.
According to the TSA, the enrollment process will be as easy as filling out an online application and writing a check:
When available, the application will be a two-step process:
- Fill out an online application.
- Verify identity and provide fingerprints at a TSA Pre✓™ enrollment center.
Applicants may pay the anticipated $85 enrollment fee online, or at an enrollment center. There is a five-year term of eligibility, after which members will need to re-apply. TSA expects the vetting process to take approximately 2-3 weeks. A U.S. passport is not required to enroll. The first two enrollment locations, Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) and Indianapolis International Airport (IND), will open in fall 2013 with plans to expand to additional enrollment sites nationwide.
The TSA, however, makes clear on its website that it reserves the right to randomly pat down passengers who enroll in the PreCheck program.
“TSA will always incorporate random and unpredictable security measures throughout the airport and no individual will be guaranteed expedited screening in order to retain a certain element of randomness to prevent terrorists from gaming the system,” officials with the agency note.
Also, individuals who commit certain offenses, “such as violations involving fraudulent documents, firearms, explosives, or other prohibited items at an airport or on board an aircraft are likely to be denied expedited screening for a period of time.”