U.S Travel survey reveals that four of the top five air travelers are frustrated due to the checkpoint process, though a majority of travellers are supportive of recent initiatives to improve traveler facilitation by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). Commissioned by the U.S. Travel Association to mark the 10th anniversary of TSA, the survey results were announced by U.S. Travel’s President and CEO Roger Dow at a press conference at Washington Reagan National Airport.
“I want to thank the men and women of TSA for a decade of dedicated service,” said Dow. “While we recognize the significant steps TSA has taken to improve security screening, the process still remains inefficient and frustrating for millions of Americans.”
But while travelers commend TSA for these efforts, they continue to be frustrated with the checkpoint process. In fact, four out of five air travelers reported that their top frustrations with flying are still directly related to the checkpoint process:
• 72.4 percent chose “people who bring too many carry-on bags through the security checkpoint”;
• 68 percent chose “the wait time to clear the TSA checkpoint”;
• 62.3 percent chose “having to remove shoes, belts and jackets at the TSA checkpoint”; and
• 42.5 percent chose “TSA employees who are not friendly”.
In light of the survey’s findings, U.S. Travel makes three recommendations:
• Airlines must allow more opportunities for enrollment in PreCheck and not discriminate against consumers who are not members of their loyalty programs;
• Airlines must work with TSA and the travel industry to decrease the number of carry-on bags going through passenger checkpoints, which is a top frustration for passengers and a major security concern of TSA; and
• TSA must continue to focus on traveler facilitation because travelers are more willing to fly when the hassle is reduced.
“We can reduce the hassle of flying without compromising security,” said Dow. “When we do, more Americans will travel and our economy will benefit. If travelers took just two to three more trips a year, it would generate $85 billion in travel and spending and support 880,000 additional jobs.”