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We can all agree that airport security—at least in the United States—is kind of a pain in the rear. At this point we’ve pretty much become used to being patted down, scanned, zapped, and viewed through x-ray glasses. The TSA has made some improvements with expediting the whole process, and their pre-check program—or Pre✓ as they like to call it—is probably one of the best. It’s at a whole bunch of airports across the land, but their most recent update improves the options a little bit more.
In total there’s five new airports in which the program should be kicking off, and this will bring the country’s total to about 40 by the beginning of April. Austin-Bergstrom International, Cleveland Hopkins International, Memphis International, Nashville International, and Raleigh-Durham International are the ones on the schedule to get the airport security upgrade.
If you are planning on heading to the 'Land Down Under' to escape the pending grip that winter will have on much of the US, you may be able to wiggle your toes in the sand a lot quicker after your plane touches down. The speed and ease of customs and immigration will be streamlined for selected passengers thanks to some reciprocity of Australia's SmartGate technology.
SmartGate allows Australian and New Zealand passport holders to quickly pass through customs with a swipe of their chip-enabled passport, collect a paper receipt and head to the special computerized gates. After inserting a receiptsimilar to a parking garage tickettravelers get a facial recognition scan and, if all goes well, the gates open up to collect luggage. This clears up the massive winding lines we have all encountered and which we all dread after a long flight.