I received a question from a reader that I think many travelers may have at some point so it’s best to know how to deal with it instead of being inconvenienced. Michele B. wrote: “I signed up and received a global entry card and it states it’s for TSA also. I flew Delta to San Francisco last week and Delta didn’t put on my ticket that I should have pre-check. I decided to go to the TSA lane and show them my global entry card, but they won’t except it and said it has nothing to do with TSA pre-check. Have you ever heard of this and how I can use my global entry card? Thanks for any help or advice you can give.”
Yes! In short, the TSA states: “To receive TSA PreCheck, you must include your Known Traveler Number (your CBP PASSID for Global Entry, NEXUS, or SENTRI members) in the appropriate field of your airline reservation, and the TSA PreCheck® indicator must be displayed on the boarding pass to access the lanes.”
This happened to me once when I was flying Virgin America and Air Canada back in 2014 and I learned a lot from the unpleasant experience so I wrote a post about it entitled: PreCheck Doublecheck
Whenever you renew or get a new passport, Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI or TSA PreCheck number (Known Traveler Number – KTN), you should always update your profile on the websites of all the airlines you fly. I thought I had done this in 2014 but the TSA PreCheck checkmark still wasn’t showing up on my tickets for two airlines. I thought maybe I’d input the number incorrectly or the agent I’d spoken to over the phone had mistyped it.
After I printed my boarding pass and didn’t see the TSA PreCheck logo on both my Virgin America and Air Canada tickets, I went to both ticket counters to find out if my Trusted Traveler number had been registered. Turns out they hadn’t, even though for one of those flights, I know I had called a booking agent and on the other, I had manually entered it on their website. The same thing happened to my wife as well.
I highly recommend going back to the check-in desk and asking the agent to doublecheck that the information was inputted properly.
Just keep in mind that just because you have TSA Pre doesn’t mean that you’ll get it every time. Sometimes (not very often) they purposely don’t give it to you so you get a more thorough screening.
But note that the TSA also recommends on their website: “If you believe you should have the TSA PreCheck® indicator on your boarding pass but did not receive it, please call the TSA Contact Center at (866) 289-9673, email us, or contact us at @AskTSA on Twitter and Facebook Messenger.”
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