We're nearing peak travel season, and considering last years' security line nightmare, and the fact that it takes a small lifetime to even get to a local airport these days, you can expect air travel to be a total time-suck this summer. Blessedly, the Transportation Security Administration is offering New Yorkers a small reprieve—the TSA will open a temporary TSA PreCheck application center at Penn Station next month, so you can enroll and be spared some airport time.
The temporary application center will be open from May 1st to May 19th, on weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the United Airlines Ticket Office at Penn Station. You can make an appointment online and pre-enroll.
While it does cost $85 and some government anonymity, the TSA PreCheck designation lasts for five years and lets you keep your shoes on, along with belts and light outerwear. Other bonuses include being able to keep your laptop and liquids in your bag, plus PreCheck customers are typically sent through a shorter line. That might not seem like much for the money, but I was lucky enough to travel on PreCheck on a recent multi-layover trip, and it saved me quite a bit of time and vexation.
When you show up for you appointment, make sure you have the proper documentation to prove citizenship. There's a list available online. Note that you'll need a credit card, company check or certified/cashier’s check to pay for the application at the appointment (no cash or personal checks), though you can also pay using a money order.
And if you're curious as to why it takes approximately 75 years to make it through a TSA security line, we've got at least some kind of explanation: