Dulles Security Theatre Demarcation Lines

When I first heard about elite security lanes at Dulles Airport, I loved the idea, thinking that I could avail myself of them, or they would at least help speed up the IAD security theatre.

But now that I’ve confronted this vision in reality, I am not so loving. There is something odd about “premium passengers” vs. “security checkpoint”

IAD Security Line

Doesn’t that segregation sound a little discriminatory? As if those who get the special status of “premium” need not pass through security? That their assumed wealth or status excludes them from suspicion?

Yes, I agree that the odds of a frequent flyer being a plane bomber is very low. None of the September 11th hijackers were “Premier Executives” but they were in Business Class before going all Atta on New York and Washington DC.

And while even “premium passengers” have to go through the same no-sandal line, I’m still feeling that this Dulles demarcation ain’t right.

4 Comments so far

  1. Paulo (unregistered) on May 21st, 2007 @ 11:21 am

    As Jay Leno put it when the news of the “premium” access first came out, “It’s a great idea from TSA; a separate line, for rich people.”


  2. sunchaser (unregistered) on May 21st, 2007 @ 11:40 am

    Maybe they should change it from “premium” to “person who has a clue that you: have to take off shoes, have to take out your laptop, can’t take a shampoo size bottle of liquid on the plane, etc.” Because frankly, I’m amazed to see that people still don’t know to do this (despite all the signage). And if I can pay a little more to go through a faster/more clued-in line (when I have thirty minutes to make a flight), I’ll do it.

    Why should the frequent travelers suffer because of people who travel once per year/don’t know how to read signs?

    As a commentary on Dulles, I’ve heard people say that some third world airports are better than Dulles :)


  3. Max (unregistered) on May 21st, 2007 @ 12:24 pm

    Do you have an issue with McDonald’s Premium Coffee? That sure ain’t bein’ for rich folks.

    The words “premium”, “elite”, and “first class” get thrown around by the airlines all the time, but I don’t think they have anything to do with your income level.


  4. Tiff (unregistered) on May 21st, 2007 @ 12:37 pm

    While I agree with you in theory, Sunchaser, I have to question whether the “Premium” line is in fact the more clued-in line. I’m just saying- more money doesn’t automatically make you more clued in…



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