TSA Hires 1,600 More Officers Before Record-Breaking Summer Travel Season

May 17, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

The Transportation Security Administration is preparing for a record crush of flyers throughout the peak summer travel season.

On the busiest travel days (like holiday weekends) the agency expects to process about 2.7 million passengers through security checkpoints, which would match its all-time record for most passengers screened in one day set on the Sunday after Thanksgiving in 2004. TSA expects to screen a total of 243 million travelers between Memorial Day and Labor Day.

The agency announced Thursday that it would be hiring an additional 1,600 officers and 50 more canine teams to help expedite the record-setting deluge of passengers and avoid painfully long lines at airport security checkpoints. The new measures were revealed in a Congressional hearing for the House Homeland Security subcommittee on transportation.

The lawmakers criticized the TSA for one measure it’s taking to help speed along passenger lines: funneling passengers from regular security lines into TSA PreCheck lines if bomb-sniffing dogs have screened them. TSA contends that if that policy ends, the airport lines could snarl passengers into waiting for hours.

Last week, TSA Administrator David Pekoske said the agency was taking additional steps to deal with the massive wave of travelers, too. Pekoske said TSA would be testing 3D scanners, called computed tomography, in Phoenix (PHX) and Boston (BOS) that let officers rotate images of the inside of the bag to get a better look without having to pull it out of the x-ray machine and perform a hand search. Thursday’s hearing revealed at least 35 of the 3D scanners would go into airports this summer.

Additionally, to more efficiently screen bags through x-ray machines, agents are asking passengers to remove more items from their carry-ons, in addition to traditional items like laptops and other large electronics to get clear views of the bags. This would reduce the number of additional scans needed. Earlier this year, flyers noticed the TSA asking them to remove items like snacks that might clutter the bag’s scan image.

H/T: USA Today

Featured image by PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images.

Bank of America® Premium Rewards® Visa® credit card

This card from Bank of America gets really interesting if you have a BofA checking, savings or investment account. Depending on the value of your combined accounts you can potentially get as much as 3.5x points on travel/dining and 2.625x points on other purchases making it the richest consumer banking bonus out there.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Receive 50,000 bonus points – a $500 value – after you make at least $3,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening
  • Earn unlimited 2 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining purchases and unlimited 1.5 points per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • If you're a Bank of America Preferred Rewards member, you can earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase
  • No limit to the points you can earn and your points don't expire
  • Redeem for cash back as a statement credit, deposit into eligible Bank of America® accounts, credit to eligible Merrill accounts, or gift cards or purchases at the Bank of America Travel Center
  • Get up to $200 in combined airline incidental and airport expedited screening statement credits + valuable travel insurance protections
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees
  • Low $95 annual fee
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
17.74% - 24.74% Variable APR on purchases and balance transfers
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $10 or 3% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.