In the interest of full disclosure, One Mile At A Time earns a referral bonus for anyone that’s approved through some of the below links. These are the best publicly available offers that we have found for each card. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of the bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Please check out my advertiser policy for further details about our partners, including American Express, Chase, and Citi, and thanks for your support!
Update: Many details for The Platinum Card® from American Express have changed as of 3/30/17. The links below are expired, but you can learn more about the new offer and card benefits here!
The two innovations of the past several years that have made the US travel experience substantially more pleasant have been TSA Pre-Check and Global Entry. As a reminder, TSA Pre-Check allows eligible travelers expedited security screening, where they don’t have to take off their shoes, or take their liquids or laptops out of their bags.
Meanwhile Global Entry allows for expedited customs & immigration, where eligible travelers can just use kiosks at immigration, rather than having to queue for an agent.
While Global Entry is valid regardless of which airline you’re flying, TSA Pre-Check requires flying certain airlines that are enrolled in the program.
Over the past year the TSA has nicely expanded the number of airlines that participate in Pre-Check. For example, last year the TSA added Aeromexico, Etihad, and Lufthansa to the program, among other airlines.
11 more airlines are joining TSA Pre-Check!
Just today the TSA has announced that 11 more airlines have joined Pre-Check. Perhaps best of all, the latest round of airlines are joining Pre-Check immediately, rather than at some point in the future.
The 11 airlines that are now participating in Pre-Check include Aruba Airlines, Avianca, Boutique Airlines, Emirates, Key Lime Air, Miami Air International, Southern Airways Express, Spirit Airlines, Sunwing, Virgin Atlantic, and Xtra Airways.
I’m embarrassed to admit that I haven’t heard of several of those airlines.
These complement the 19 airlines that already participate in Pre-Check, which include Aeromexico, Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, Allegiant, American Airlines, Cape Air, Delta Air Lines, Etihad Airways, Frontier Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Lufthansa, OneJet, Seaborne Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, United Airlines, Virgin America, and WestJet.
To be eligible for Pre-Check, always make sure you enter your Known Traveler Number at the time of booking.
Registering for TSA Pre-Check
Keep in mind that while you can pay to register for TSA Pre-Check directly, you’re much better off registering for Global Entry, as it also comes with TSA Pre-Check (TSA Pre-Check, on the other hand, doesn’t come with Global Entry).
Several credit cards offer Global Entry fee credits, where they’ll reimburse you for the $100 fee to join Global Entry. These cards include the following:
- Citi Prestige® Card
- The Platinum Card® from American Express
- The Enhanced Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN
- Chase Sapphire Reserve Card
The very best way to get TSA Pre-Check is through NEXUS, which costs just $50 and gets you expedited immigration in the US and Canada, Global Entry, and TSA Pre-Check. You pay half the price and get the most privileges. But that’s not as practical for everyone, since there aren’t as many centers where you can enroll for NEXUS, since it’s primarily intended for those traveling frequently between the US and Canada.
It’s great to see more airlines joining Pre-Check, as it really can be a huge timesaver. I’m especially excited to see Avianca, Emirates, and Virgin Atlantic join.
Then again, I’m not sure when I’ll next see a Pre-Check on my boarding pass, given the luck I’ve had on my past few trips.
Which other airlines would you most like to see join Pre-Check?
(Tip of the hat to View from the Wing)