JetBlue joins TSA PreCheck, mostly(-ish)


JetBlue became the latest airline to join the TSA PreCheck program, announcing today that their passengers can now receive expedited screening at 22 airports. Sortof. Sometimes. Maybe.

imageOf all the airlines which have rolled out PreCheck the JetBlue version is, by far, the most limited. For starters, JetBlue is not integrating the program with their TrueBlue loyalty program. Other airlines have worked with the TSA to get members of their programs (usually top-tier elites) to be included in PreCheck, even if they do not have a trusted traveler number via Global Entry or NEXUS. Not so much for JetBlue, at least not that has been made public. Mosaic members in TrueBlue have to use their Trusted Traveler number, just like everyone else. Also, the number must be entered on each reservation; there does not appear to be any way to save it into your travel profile online.

Access to PreCheck is only available on the mobile boarding passes which are only available via the mobile apps. Sure, I might be the only person traveling who does have GE/NEXUS and who does not have an iPhone or Android so maybe not so many this one is really just my problem rather than a bigger issue. Still, it is annoying to me. On the plus side, the press release says that they’re working on this and that they hope to have it available for paper BPs by the end of Q1 ’14. I wonder if I’ll have bought a new phone by then.

 

And the last quirk in the deployment is one which I squarely blame the TSA for. They still have a bunch of airports where the PreCheck experience is a pseudo-expedited offering. Currently 5 of JetBlue’s 22 participating terminals (see list below) have that limited implementation.

I’m very happy that there is at least the partial participation. As the last large carrier in the US without the program (Southwest announced participation just last week) they were really starting to lag their peers. And, truly, having anything at all is better than nothing. It is still great if it works for you and they say they’ll get the rest of the bits in line over the coming months, but the participation today is very much an “-ish” sort of situation right now.

List of participating airports (italics for the semi-Pre terminals):

  • Austin, TX (AUS)
  • Boston, MA (BOS)
  • Charlotte, NC (CLT)
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL (FLL)
  • Hartford Springfield, CT (BDL)
  • Houston, TX (HOU)
  • Las Vegas, NV (LAS)
  • Long Beach, CA (LGB)
  • Los Angeles, CA (LAX)
  • New York, NY (JFK)
  • New York, NY (LGA)
  • Newark, NJ (EWR)
  • Oakland, CA (OAK)
  • Orlando, FL (MCO)
  • Pittsburgh, PA (PIT)
  • Salt Lake City, UT (SLC)
  • San Francisco, CA (SFO)
  • San Juan, PR (SJU)
  • Seattle, WA (SEA)
  • Syracuse, NY (SYR)
  • Washington/Dulles, DC (IAD)
  • White Plains, NY (HPN)

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

5 Comments

  1. Seth, can you expand on what you mean by “pseudo-expedited” PreCheck? Happily, I rarely fly through the airports you highlight, but I’m wondering what is different about the setup there.

    1. At some airports the PreCheck lanes are mixed in with other lanes. In those cases you get to go through with your shoes on and straight to the WTMD rather than the nude-o-scope but you still have to take electronic devices out. It is a bit wacky but it works and no groping after an opt-out.

  2. Could this be the case where the code is embedded within the paper or on-line BP’s bar code, but the logo is not displayed? Just seems strange that they would implement the system on just one platform but not others.

    1. It has to do with the way they are producing the barcode on the paper BPs. Those codes are not digitally signed and don’t have the TSA data in them. I’ll have one to play with tomorrow night and will try to show you more what I’m talking about but the gist of it is that they cannot put the necessary data on the paper ones yet so they aren’t valid for PreCheck. Estimated fix on that is late Q1 ’14.

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