Can others in my party go through TSA PreCheck?

  • If I have TSA PreCheck (i.e. I have a KTN from TSA and the "pre-check" logo gets printed on my boarding pass) and a travel companion does not, can they go with me through the PreCheck security lines? This is assuming that the travel companion is booked in the same reservation on the same flights and is also a U.S. citizen and not on any no-fly or otherwise increased scrutiny lists.

    I'm guessing the answer is no, but I haven't seen anything from TSA specifically addressing this.

    I have occasionally been allowed through TSA PreCheck with others in party despite not having it myself, and occasionally not.

    Every time I've flown (I have a KTN and use it), it's been a noticed thing that if the Pre-Check line is relatively empty, and the normal lines are starting to back up, TSA will start directing people to use Pre-Check. I can't tell you how many times I've heard under-the-breath and overt grumbling about "they're not Pre-Check" and "why did I pay for this?"

    @CGCampbell It appears that TSA has just gotten rid of that practice, so if you haven't paid for it, you won't be getting it anymore. - TSA Ends Precheck Free Rides

    @DavidK They may have gotten rid of the pseudo-random on-the-spot diversions to the PreCheck line (as their cited source from MCO said,) but I can confirm from personal experience that, as of today, they're still sometimes assigning it at check-in to some people who are not enrolled (as they've been doing since the beginning of PreCheck.)

    I have PreCheck, and as recently as June, a couple friends on the same reservation as me were able to use it despite not having it themselves.

    @DavidK my wife and I flew from JFK to Dakar seven weeks ago; she got a pre-check boarding pass and I did not. The TSA did not allow me to accompany her in the pre-check line. Neither of us has signed up for the program. The first (and only previous) time she was selected for pre-check, I was also selected.

    @phoog Thanks for the data point. That's interesting to know that they're still doing some 'managed inclusion,' since they claimed to be at least partially phasing that out late last year.

    According to the correction at https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/dr-gridlock/wp/2015/10/29/no-more-cutting-the-line-at-tsa-screening/, managed inclusion was a different program, though other descriptions of "safe flight" are more about identifying high risks than low.

    From my experience, the TSA Precheck is tied to your ticket so if you buy a ticket with valid TSA Precheck, it lets you in. I have Southwest companion pass and because it's through my traveler number, my companion also gets the benefit :)

  • CGCampbell

    CGCampbell Correct answer

    6 years ago

    According to TSA.gov, the FAQ says no:

    I’m traveling with my family; can they also use the TSA Pre✓® lane?

    • Family members ages 12 and under traveling with an eligible parent or guardian with a TSA Pre✓® indicator on their boarding pass can participate in expedited screening.
    • Family members 13 and older must go through standard security lanes or should apply for a DHS trusted traveler program.

    I know your question isn't about family, but 'travel companions', but seeing as they don't even allow family members over 13 to join you on your KTN, it can safely be assumed by a reasonable person (and yes, I know we're talking TSA here, irony noted) that a non-family member would also not be eligible to travel under your KTN.

    And apparently I completely overlooked this on their FAQ. Thanks for the find! In my case, the 'travel companion' actually is a family member (my sister,) I just tried to ask the question a bit more generally so that it would be useful to more than just me, but still narrow enough to answer.

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Content dated before 7/24/2021 11:53 AM