Skip to content

Study Documents Airport Hassles

YOU KNOW THE SITUATION. You show up for a flight with little time to spare, only to confront a line at the security gates that snakes around the main terminal. Chastened, you arrive hours early for the trip back, only to breeze through the security checkpoint that you encounter on that leg of the trip. You try to kill the hours remaining until takeoff by making calls or sending email, but you end up squandering lots of valuable time.

Travel managers and business fliers have had the same experience. In a recent survey on airport passenger screening by the Business Travel Coalition, 38 percent of 651 respondents cited inconsistency of procedures among airports as their top frustration at security checkpoints.

Coming in a close second on the list of concerns were long lines, which were cited as a source of frustration by 37 percent of respondents.

Smaller percentages of respondents were most irked by having to remove their shoes (10 percent), being selected for secondary screening (7 percent), and taking out their laptops (5 percent).

With these hassles in mind, more than three-quarters of business travelers and 60 percent of travel managers support or strongly support a registered-traveler program. In such a program, by subjecting themselves to a background check and providing a biometric identifier, travelers would be able to go through a special expedited screening process.

Certain caveats qualified traveler support for such a program, however. Many respondents noted that the fee charged would have to be reasonable, the benefits would have to be apparent, and passenger data would have to be well protected.