Airline Group Gives Frustrated Travelers an Outlet to Vent

Airlines for America, the trade organization representing the principal U.S. airlines, has launched a new effort, "I Hate the Wait," to encourage travelers to speak up about their long waits in airport security lines.

The frustrating waits in airport security lines are enough to get passengers complaining.

Need a place to vent? Airlines for America thought you might. This week, A4A launched “I Hate the Wait,” a website where travelers can shout about their insane waits in line. The association is encouraging users to use both the Twitter hashtag #iHateTheWait and to tag @TSA in Instagram photos, so the Transportation Security Administration knows their pain.

In comments to the Associated Press, A4A spokeswoman Jean Medina said the strategy was focused on “raising awareness of the issue and serving as crowdsourced [wait time] information.”

The effort comes as reports about long wait times at airport security checkpoints have been all over the news. Last week, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson added TSA officers at larger airports and called for additional funding to boost personnel during the busy summer travel season. A plan to shift $34 million in Homeland Security funds to address the problem was quickly approved by a Senate Appropriations subcommittee.

A4A applauded those moves but recommended that passengers take their own steps. The association recommended that travelers sign up for TSA’s PreCheck program—which has struggled to meet the agency’s lofty goals—and that they speak up online.

“Our recently released passenger satisfaction survey tells us that the efficiency of the security process is a major factor of their overall flying experience,” Sharon Pinkerton, A4A’s senior vice president of legislative and regulatory policy, said in a news release. “The Department of Transportation’s benchmark of the maximum acceptable wait time is 29 minutes, but we are seeing lines that go 60 or 90 minutes at some major airports. That’s why we are doing everything we can to help make the process more efficient for passengers and TSA alike.”

(danjo paluska/Flickr)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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