In terms of traveler volumes, this was the busiest Thanksgiving in the Transportation Security Administration’s history, and the stats point to the value of its TSA PreCheck biometric screening program.
The TSA says that Sunday, November 25th, saw 2.7 million travelers pass through TSA screening, making it the single busiest day for travel in its 17-year history. And according to the organization’s statistics, 99 percent of travelers enrolled in TSA PreCheck waited in line for security screening for less than 10 minutes.
It’s a testament to the effectiveness of PreCheck, which offers expedited screening for travellers who enroll their biographic and biometric data in advance. The stats also offer some validation for proponents of biometric passenger processing such as the World Travel & Tourism Council, which has urged stakeholders to embrace such technologies as a means of coping with increasing traveler volumes and escalating security concerns; the TSA says that it has seen passenger growth of four percent per annum over the last few years, and that this Thanksgiving showed a six percent increase over that of 2018.
Given these trends, it’s fair to expect the TSA to further step up efforts to get people enrolled in its PreCheck program, especially after its announcement last month that it has teamed up with the US Customs and Border Protection agency to expand the use of biometric traveler screening technologies, with the latter having rapidly extended its own face-scanning security initiative across the country over the last few years.
November 28, 2018 – by Alex Perala