Travel Tip - Do I need TSA PreCheck?
It’s me again your friendly neighborhood travel expert. If you’ve ever enjoyed (or turned your nose up at) one of my travel tip articles, you may have noticed how I sign off.
“I’m 'Erik The Travel Guy' Hastings and I’ll see you in line at security.”
Now, why would I do that? I'm sure you can imagine. It’s because we’ve all been there. Not only that but, if you travel frequently, you’ve been there AND sweating - watching the seconds click on by as time marches closer to you being stuck on the wrong side of the door at your departure gate. It’s in those moments where you might notice the carefree travelers strolling by you in the TSA PreCheck lane and you think to yourself, “I gotta do that! Why didn’t I do that? It’s not even that expensive! Why won’t this lady move two feet closer to the man in front of her? Aaaagggh!
Well here’s your answer to why and - more importantly- why not to get TSA PreCheck. Four reasons to pull the trigger and three to stay undercover. Let’s go!
TRAVEL FREQUENCYIf you are on the go even more than once a year, then getting your TSA PreCheck is worth it. Time is so precious. Let’s not waste it standing in close proximity for way too long to our fellow cranky human cargo.
FOREIGN TRAVELDid you know Global Entry includes TSA PreCheck? For those who don’t know, Global Entry is the international version of TSA PreCheck and let me tell you, if you grind your gears in line at your local airport, just wait until you’re doing so waiting to get back into the good ole’ USA! If you have a passport, then get Global Entry and TSA PreCheck will make your travel at home that much better.
ANXIETYI covered this somewhat in the preamble but allow me to bloviate. Traveling is supposed to be enjoyable. Even if you do it for work and work only, there is no reason to hate the experience. So let me alleviate any guilt you may feel for making this move and say this, “My friend you are worth it. Splurge on making your life this much better. You won’t regret it.”
HOLIDAY TRAVELSome folks just simply don’t travel. I know, can you imagine? However, if you’re someone who only travels during the major holidays - even if it’s just once a year - TSA PreCheck is for you. We don’t need to look any further than the fiasco this past holiday season that landed flyers firmly in the lurch. If you’ve got holiday flight plans, get your PreCheck settled.
REASONS WHY NOT
TRAVEL FREQUENCYIf you don’t travel too often and have no plans whatsoever to book holiday travel, then you really don’t need PreCheck. Pass on it. Live your life. Bring snacks for the security line. You’re good.
YOUR LOCAL AIRPORTThe thing is, TSA PreCheck doesn’t work everywhere. No matter how cool you feel sporting your preferred status, if the airport doesn’t recognize you as the special, unique little superstar you are, then you’ll be out of luck. If you’re not sure, check your local airport’s website. Yes, your home airport has a website and it's filled with valuable details such as whether or not they have TSA PreCheck lanes at security.
PRICEFlying is expensive enough. If you don’t want to fork over the extra bucks for the one time fee of $85 and renewal fees of $70 then don’t. I will say this though, take up meditation. Because staying calm is going to be key if you’re running late for your flight.
That’s it! That’s all I got! You’re armed and ready to go with everything you need to know! Go forth and see the world. After all, that’s what it’s there for.
Until next time, I’m Erik “The Travel Guy” Hastings and I’ll see you… well, you know.