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Registered Traveler Program UpdateOctober 30, 2006 By: Dan Butcher Travel Agent
The Clear security screening program has plans for nationwide expansion
The Clear Registered Traveler program, which expedites the security-screening process for its members, has been in place at Orlando International Airport since July 19, 2005, and will expand to four more U.S. airports and possibly a Canadian airport in the near future.
Clear's parent company, Manhattan-based Verified Identity
Pass, Inc., developed the program in conjunction with the Transportation
Security Administration (TSA), and now has more than 30,000 members. Advance
registration is now available for Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International
Airport (CVG), Indianapolis International Airport (IND), British Airways
Terminal 7 of New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and San
José Mineta International Airport (SJC). No dates for implementation at these
airports have yet been announced. Clear also has an agreement with
program there, and is currently working with the Canadian government to gain
its approval. The TSA has approved the expansion of the program to as many as
20 airports in
LAX and Baltimore/Washington (BWI) have all requested quotes from
for implementing the Clear program.
After completing an online registration form, the applicant
must bring two forms of government identification (e.g., a passport and
driver's license) to a Clear enrollment station at the airport, where Clear
uses biometric technology to take a picture of each member's irises and record
their fingerprints. Clear then submits all of this to TSA for approval. Once
TSA runs a security threat assessment (i.e., background check) and gives Clear
the go-ahead, each member is issued an ID card, which they present at the
entrance to the Clear security lane. Members typically receive their cards
two-to-four weeks after registration.
"Clear lanes" are separate from the airport's
other security lines and are staffed with attendants to expedite the security
check-in process. Clear members are exempt from automatic selectee screening,
the process of randomly searching passengers. Clear members also have their own
designated X-ray conveyor belt for their carry-on luggage.
Chuch Ogg, president of Orlando-based Travel Link, says,
"We have over 100 corporate clients enrolled in the Registered Traveler
program who all swear by it, and I'm a member myself. It's wonderful, and I'm
praying that they...make it nationwide, because the expediency is
Ogg estimates that the average time it takes to get from the
airport's entrance to the Clear lane to
airport tram is about seven minutes, with the Clear portion taking about a
director of public affairs, says, "The response from passengers has been
very positive; seasoned and frequent travelers especially love it. The most
common question they have is, 'Why isn't this at other airports?'"
She says that the Clear check-in, consisting of an ATM-like
"dip" of the Clear card and a fingerprint or iris scan (whichever
each member prefers), takes between one and three minutes, although she advises
that, to be safe, Clear members should plan for their entire trip through
security, plus the tram ride to their gate, to take 20 minutes.
General Electric is a partner in the Clear program, and it
has developed a new kiosk—still awaiting approval from TSA—that includes shoe
scanning and explosive trace detection. If approved, this would allow members
to keep their shoes and coats on while passing through security.
The TSA is charging an extra $30 vetting fee on top of
Clear's rate, but Clear will absorb part of that fee. The cost for the program
for one year is $99.95, which can be locked in for three years by paying in
The company does offer partnership deals with agents, with
opportunities to reap commissions on client registrations.
For details, agents should contact Fred Fischer,
senior vice president of sales, at 212-332-6319 or [email protected].
For more information, visit www.tsa.gov/what_we_do/layers/rt/index.shtm
To register, visit www.flyclear.com/enroll.html.