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TSA PreCheck Program Expands with Addition of Four Major Airlines

Aer Lingus, Air New Zealand, Ethiopian Airlines, and Saudia are the latest additions to the scheme

by Fergus Cole

July 3, 2024

Photo: Courtesy of CLEAR

Another four major airlines were added to the TSA PreCheck program earlier this week, making the number of carriers joining the scheme close to 100.

As confirmed by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) on Monday, Air New Zealand, Ethiopian Airlines, Saudia, and Irish flag carrier Aer Lingus have now joined TSA PreCheck, providing passengers of all four carriers with a quicker and easier security process when flying out of the United States.

Photo: Aer Lingus, Airbus A321neo. Courtesy of Adam Khan / Unsplash

With a record-breaking number of passengers expected at U.S. airports this summer, the addition of these airlines is expected to help ease congestion at security lines across the country.

Launched in 2013, the TSA PreCheck program offers those who sign up a separate security lane at TSA checkpoints, and it has been constantly adding new airlines and airports to its network over the last ten years.

In total, almost 100 airlines have joined the program. It is available in more than 200 U.S. airports and Lynden Pindling International Airport (NAS) in Nassau, Bahamas.

The program is available to all low-risk U.S. citizens, nationals, and permanent residents for an annual fee, which currently costs just $78 for a five-year membership. Once approved, members will be given a Known Traveler Number (KTN) that passengers must enter when making their reservation. This will then be shown on their boarding pass, which can be used to enter the TSA PreCheck security lanes.

Photo: Overhead sign showing security check point lanes designated for first class and TSA Precheck / Photo: RYO Alexandre/Shutterstock

While typically shorter than standard security lines, they also tend to move much quicker, as passengers don’t have to remove items such as shoes, belts, jackets, laptops, and liquids when passing through the checkpoint. According to the TSA, 99 percent of PreCheck members pass through security in less than 10 minutes.

The addition of Aer Lingus, Air New Zealand, Ethiopian Airlines, and Saudia to TSA PreCheck comes just three months after another eight airlines were added to the program, including Spanish flag carrier Iberia, Air Tahiti Nui, and business class-only airline La Compagnie. A handful of major airlines have yet to join the scheme, including EgyptAir and Chinese carriers China Eastern and China Southern.

Photo: Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. Courtesy of Air New Zealand.

The most recent addition of airlines to the program offers international flights from the U.S. to Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Oceania.

Aer Lingus offers flights to Dublin (DUB) from thirteen U.S. airports, including New York (JFK), Chicago (ORD), Boston (BOS), as well as the recent addition of services to Denver (DEN), Las Vegas (LAS), and Minneapolis (MSP).

Meanwhile, Air New Zealand offers transpacific flights from Auckland (AKL) to six U.S. destinations, including JFK, Los Angeles (LAX), San Francisco (SFO), and Honolulu (HNL), as well as connections to numerous far-flung destinations across South Pacific.

Ethiopian Airlines, the flag carrier of Ethiopia, offers flights from five U.S. airports to Addis Ababa (ADD), including Washington, D.C. (IAD), Newark (EWR), and Atlanta (ATL). Being the largest carrier in Africa, Ethiopian Airlines also offers connecting flights to dozens of destinations across the continent.

Finally, Saudia offers flights from JFK, LAX, and IAD to Riyadh (RUH) or Jeddah (JED) in Saudi Arabia.