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The Transportation Security Administration is in the midst of a crippling furlough, as a result of the current government shutdown. But that hasn’t stopped the agency from trying something new — and, especially in this case, long overdue.
The TSA has finally added PreCheck to the Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) — where many travelers begin their journey ahead of long-haul flights. It’s a huge boost to eligible flyers, given that regular security lines can be outrageously long during peak periods.
I received mixed reports as to when the new checkpoint actually opened — one contractor checking boarding passes claimed today was the first day, while an actual uniformed TSA agent said PreCheck’s been open at TBIT “for a few years,” which certainly isn’t true. What matters is that it’s definitely available now — I passed through Friday afternoon.
There are two screening entrances at TBIT — the north entrance is for all passengers, while the south entrance (to the left when you walk in) is exclusively for flyers with the PreCheck mark on their boarding pass.
While I have yet to actually fly out of TBIT, I’ve passed through several times to use the Star Alliance Lounge ahead of my United flights — before the LAX Polaris Lounge, it was by far the best option for business class and Star Alliance Gold flyers traveling on United.
And, as expected, this afternoon’s experience was a huge upgrade — I was through the checkpoint in just over three minutes, including the time it took to walk from the escalator to the credentials desk. Not a bad first day for the TSA.
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