Standing in the long security lines at the airports can be really tiresome. The lines, in fact, get longer as the holiday season approaches. This is where Clear, a biometric screening program, comes into the picture. This is an improvement on the earlier T.S.A PreCheck system and is currently operational in 24 airports around the USA. Since Clear uses biometrics, it is expected to speed up the security checking process even more. Either a scan of the iris or fingerprints will be taken to get your identification and let you quickly pass through airport security. The working of the system must be understood before beginning to ask is clear worth the money?
The workings of the Clear system
Once you are a Clear member, you need to go through the Clear lane at the airport where your fingerprints will be scanned, or iris image will be read to okay your identification. Clear, however, does not let you bypass the T.S.A screening. But it gives you the chance to jump the queue in T.S.A screening, and you do not need to stand at the end of the line. You can head directly to the T.S.A employee who will take your boarding pass and let you pass through as your identification checking has already been done.
The pros and cons of Clear
The fact that it lets you have a kind of VIP experience is the easiest answer to is clear worth the money. Clear needs spending of $179 per year, with an additional $50 for each family member. There will be no extra amount needed for children who are below eighteen. But the membership can be had at highly discounted rates too through several loyalty programs and credit card options. The biggest advantage is that you can sign up for the program on the spot. There are no hassles of an interview, and the process takes not more than ten minutes. If you have not had the time to sign up earlier, you can sign up then as you get through security.
The other answer to the question is clear worth the money is not very positive as well. There are several issues with it, and the foremost of all the issues is the availability of the technology. It is presently available in only 24 airports. So, for instance, you travel from Miami and Las Vegas on a frequent basis. Clear will be able to help you only in Miami, and you are back to the old hassles at Las Vegas airport. Besides, it is not too cheap as well at $50 extra for each family member. It defeats the purpose if you only enroll yourself and have to wait up at the end of the checkpoint for your family to come and join you.
In spite of the drawbacks, Clear is undoubtedly a noble initiative. It is hoped that the drawbacks will be solved once the number of airports in the country using the technology increases and so does the number of users.