In this post, we will discuss how to sign up for TSA PreCheck and CLEAR. What is TSA PreCheck? TSA PreCheck lets eligible travelers enjoy expedited security screening. This program is available at participating US airport locations and most international itineraries.

Woman in airport looking at flight information boards

Benefits of TSA PreCheck

Ease through checkpoints without removing:

  • Shoes
  • Belts
  • Liquids and gels from your carry-on
  • Light outerwear/jacket
  • Laptop from your bag

 

Eligibility

You can apply for the program if you’re a:

  • US citizen, or
  • Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR), and
  • Haven’t been convicted of certain crimes

 

How to Sign Up for TSA PreCheck

Every American traveler should consider signing up for TSA PreCheck. It is like a speed lane that will get you through airport security and onto your plane faster. Here's how to sign up:

 

1- Make sure that you’re eligible

 

To be able to sign up for TSA PreCheck, you must meet the eligibility requirements. Basically, as long as you're a US citizen or a permanent resident, and haven't been convicted of any crime, you are good to go.

 

2- Apply online

 

If you’re eligible, the next step is to apply online. You need to fill the online form with your basic information (name, address, date of birth, citizenship, etc.).

 

3- Make an appointment

 

After filling out the online form, you will be prompted to make an in-person appointment. There are more than 380 enrollment centers in the United States. Click here to find a location. You have to visit a center within 120 days of filling the online form.

 

4- Prepare all the required documents

 

Before showing up for the interview, make sure you have all the required documents. You will need a valid photo ID, proof of citizenship, and immigration documentation (if that applies to you). Click here to know what documents you need to bring.

 

5- Have an in-person interview at an enrollment center

 

During the interview, you will get fingerprinted. Then you’ll answer questions about yourself as well as your travel habits. Essentially, they will be verifying the information you submitted online. The interview is about 10 minutes.

 

6- Pay the fee

 

You have to pay the $85 application fee. This covers 5 years of membership. You can pay by credit card, company check, certified/cashier's check, or money order.

*Note, there are discounts to this fee for those enrolled in some frequent flyer programs, some credit card members, and some loyalty programs.

 

7- Wait

 

Check the status of your TSA PreCheck application by clicking here. While many applicants receive the notification letter the next day, for some, it may take up to 45 days.

 

8- Receive your KTN

 

Once your application is approved, you’ll receive a notification letter together with a Known Traveler Number (KTN). This number proves that you’ve been pre-approved by US Customs and Border Protection and deemed as a low-risk traveler. Before you travel, make sure your KTN is updated in your account or flight reservation.

 

Once you have your KTN, you will be able to swish on by the long security lines at more than 200 airports and get into a specially-designated TSA PreCheck line. Skip common security checks, keep your laptop in your carry-on, keep your belt and shoes on, among others. It’s very convenient indeed.

 

To sign up for TSA PreCheck, click here.

 

CLEAR

What is CLEAR? CLEAR is a company that helps travelers get through security at certain airports and stadiums in the US in 5 minutes or less. With dedicated lanes, CLEAR members can bypass long lines by using biometrics (eyes and fingertips) to validate their identity.

 

Where is CLEAR Available?

Today, members can use CLEAR in more than 40 US airports and stadiums.

 

Airports

  • Atlanta (ATL)
  • Austin (AUS)
  • Baltimore-Washington (BWI)
  • Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE)
  • Dallas Love Field (DAL)
  • Washington Reagan (DCA)
  • Denver (DEN)
  • Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW)
  • Detroit (DTW)
  • Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL)
  • Westchester County Airport (HPN) in New York
  • Houston Hobby (HOU)
  • Washington Dulles (IAD)
  • Houston Bush (IAH)
  • New York John F. Kennedy (JFK)
  • Las Vegas (LAS)
  • Los Angeles (LAX)
  • New York LaGuardia (LGA)
  • Orlando (MCO)
  • Miami (MIA)
  • Minneapolis-Saint Paul (MSP)
  • Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY)
  • Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX)
  • San Antonio (SAT)
  • Seattle (SEA)
  • San Francisco (SFO)
  • San Jose (SJC)
  • Salt Lake City (SLC)

 

Stadiums

  • SunTrust Park (Atlanta)
  • Madison Square Garden (New York)
  • Yankee Stadium (New York)
  • Citi Field (New York)
  • Coors Field (Denver)
  • Comerica Park (Detroit)
  • AmericanAirlines Arena (Miami)
  • Banc of California Stadium (Los Angeles)
  • Avaya Stadium (San Jose)
  • Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum (San Francisco)
  • Oracle Park (San Francisco)
  • CenturyLink Field (Seattle)
  • T-Mobile Park (Seattle)

 

Who Can Become a CLEAR Member?

To qualify, you must be 18 years old or above. In addition, you must have one of the following photo ID:

  • US Driver's License
  • US Passport
  • US Passport Card
  • US-issued Permanent Resident Card
  • State Issued ID
  • US Military ID

 

The ID must be valid, have a photo, not amended, and unexpired.

 

How to Enroll in CLEAR?

Enrolling is a simple process which can be broken down into three easy steps:

 

  • Register online or in person in a CLEAR enrollment center.
  • If you register online, come to the airport enrollment center with a required ID and submit biometrics. No appointment is necessary.
  • You’re officially enrolled and can start using CLEAR lanes that very same day.

 

How Much Does CLEAR Cost?

CLEAR full membership is $179 per year. It provides access to all CLEAR locations at participating airports and stadiums. Full membership also allows you to add 3 family members for only $50 each per year. Children under 18 can use a CLEAR Lane for free as long as they’re accompanied by a member (no need to add such children to your CLEAR account).

 

CLEAR Airport Procedure

After checking in at the airport, proceed to the security checkpoint for the terminal you’re flying out of. Rather than waiting in line, you can come to the CLEAR Lane, where there’s an attendant who can help you with the process. Once at the kiosk, you can scan your boarding pass, validate your identification with your eyes and fingertips, and move on to the physical screening.

 

To sign up for CLEAR, click here.

Conclusion

Signing up for TSA PreCheck and CLEAR can save you time and a lot of hassle at the airport. Both TSA PreCheck and CLEAR are easy to sign up for. They are both worth the money if you travel regularly. We would love to hear about your experiences with TSA PreCheck and CLEAR. Please leave your comments below.

To find out ways to save time (and your sanity) at the airport, check out our 3 episodes giving you all the inside tips.

How to Save Time (and your Sanity) at the Airport (Part 1) 
How to Save Time (and your Sanity) at the Airport (Part 2)
How to Save Time (and your Sanity) at the Airport (Part 3)

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To hear more tips on how to LOVE your trips, check out our podcast episodes.

Dianne McKinley

Fly with Chris and Di