Travel

'Trusted Traveler' Program May Shorten Airport Security Wait Times

FILE - In this Dec. 30, 2009 file photo, Tanner Suttles, left, a Transportation Security Administration employee is screened by a TSA officer during a demonstration of passenger screening technology at the TSA Systems Integration Facility in Arlington, Va. Security experts have floated several new ideas to enhance airport security in the weeks since authorities say a Nigerian man on a Detroit-bound jetliner tried to ignite explosives hidden in his crotch. Some ideas are being tested, others are far from proven, some aren't being seriously considered. Many raise questions about civil liberties and all are costly. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)

FILE - In this Dec. 30, 2009 file photo, Tanner Suttles, left, a Transportation Security Administration employee is screened by a TSA officer during a demonstration of passenger screening technology at the TSA Systems Integration Facility in Arlington, Va. Security experts have floated several new ideas to enhance airport security in the weeks since authorities say a Nigerian man on a Detroit-bound jetliner tried to ignite explosives hidden in his crotch. Some ideas are being tested, others are far from proven, some aren't being seriously considered. Many raise questions about civil liberties and all are costly. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)  (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)

Travelers fed up with long security lines at the airport may soon be offered a way to avoid them.

The Transportation Security Administration has announced it will launch a trusted traveler pilot program this fall. The government agency said it will be working with U.S. airline carriers to find some travel volunteers willing to share personal information which will help structure the pilot program. It will mirror similar trusted traveler programs operated by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and is expected to be offered at a handful of airports while in its testing stages.

The creation of such a program was one of the recommendations the U.S. Travel Association suggested in March, when it launched its own plan to reform the TSA air security experience. Director of Domestic Policy at the U.S. Travel Association Erik Hansen said recent data found that frequent business and leisure travelers would be willing to pay up to $150 to enroll in such a program.

The survey asked more than 1,000 adults how likely they would be to enroll in such a program, if it had an annual fee of between $100 and $150. Of that group, 61% of leisure travelers and 75% of business travelers said they would be willing to pay the fee if it meant less security hassle at the airport.

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