Friday, September 18, 2009

Paperless Boarding Pass Now at 30 Airports

You know, everywhere I go, people say: “Hey Blogger Bob, I hear the paperless boarding pass is available in more airports now. If you could blog about it, that would be awesome.”

So here goes…We’ve been trying out this paperless boarding pass thingamabob since 2007 and it’s been working pretty swell so far. Any cell phone or PDA that can receive and open attachments can be used. A 2-D bar code is sent to your cell phone/PDA, you open the attachment, scan it, and presto, you’re on the way through the checkpoint and to your gate.

Check out this blog post for more information on the pilot.

It’s now being piloted in 30 airports with 5 airlines participating. Here is the updated list:

George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH), Ronald Reagan Washington National (DCA), Newark International (EWR), Boston Logan International (BOS), Austin-Bergstrom International (AUS), San Antonio International (SAT), Cleveland Hopkins (CLE), New York LaGuardia (LGA), Indianapolis International (IND), Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County (DTW), Minneapolis-St. Paul International (MSP), Seattle-Tacoma International (SEA), Chicago O’Hare International (ORD), John Wayne, Orange County, CA (SNA), Los Angeles International (LAX), Las Vegas McCarran (LAS), Memphis (MEM), Atlanta Hartsfield International (ATL), Salt Lake City International (SLC), Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International (CVG), San Francisco International (SFO), San Diego International (SAN), Ft. Lauderdale-Hollywood International (FLL), Tampa International (TPA), Portland International (PDX), Phoenix Sky Harbor International (PHX), Charlotte Douglas International (CLT), New Orleans International (MSY), Raleigh-Durham International (RDU), Orlando International (MCO)

Airlines:

Continental: IAH, DCA, EWR, BOS, AUS, SAT, CLE, LGA, LAS, SFO, ORD, LAX, SAN, FLL, TPA, PDX, PHX, CLT, MSY, RDU, MCO

Delta/Northwest: ATL, LAS, MEM, MSP, DET, SLC, CVG

Delta only: LGA


Northwest only: IND

Alaska: SEAAmerican: ORD, SNA, LAX

Thanks,

Blogger Bob

TSA Blog Team

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

Bob, how does, the document verifier scrawl across the electronic boarding pass?

Sandra said...

Really, Bob, "everywhere" you go? Don't you know that making all-encompassing statements such as that does not make for good journalism?

Doug said...

This is good stuff. I use paperless for my weekly trips out of DTW and really like it. The TSA agents are accustomed to it after a short learning curve and combined with PDA-enabled airline web sites (NW and DL), it's an option that I really appreciate.

Anonymous said...

That's nice. Why do you refuse to post, on this blog and at the checkpoints where TSA is using its virtual strip-search machines, images of the same size and resolution as seen by the operator of the strip-search machine?

Bob said...

Anon Said...That's nice. Why do you refuse to post, on this blog and at the checkpoints where TSA is using its virtual strip-search machines, images of the same size and resolution as seen by the operator of the strip-search machine?

-----------------------------

Anon - I'm not sure what you want to see. I've posted large pictures here on the blog as well as TSA.gov.

We've posted links of footage from CNN and 60 Minutes filming the actual viewing room and monitor.

As far as where the technology is, that info has always been on our web page. Go here.

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

Anonymous said...

"I'm not sure what you want to see. I've posted large pictures here on the blog as well as TSA.gov."

Well, Bob, it seems like the original poster would like to see "on this blog and at the checkpoints where TSA is using its virtual strip-search machines, images of the same size and resolution as seen by the operator of the strip-search machine."

So: Are you saying that the images posted on this blog and at the relevant checkpoints are of the same size and resolution as seen by the operator of the strip-search machine? Your inability to give direct answers to simple questions about these machines speaks volumes.

trivee said...

Broken link leading to email.tsa.dhs.gov/ - please fix.

GSOLTSO said...

Sandra sez - "Really, Bob, "everywhere" you go? Don't you know that making all-encompassing statements such as that does not make for good journalism?"

Really, Sandra, don't you know that using contractions throughout the piece saves typeface and room for the editor?

I think this is a pretty good program and I am glad they are explanding it. It can speed the trip through for frequent flyers and it can cut down on paper usage. Seems like a win win so far, I am interested as to when they will expand the program to other airports and pilot them at smaller airports to test the feasibility of the program there. I likey E-Pass system (Hey, Bob, do I have to trademark that?).

West
TSA Blog Team

Marshall's SO said...

Bob wrote:

"I'm not sure what you want to see. I've posted large pictures here on the blog as well as TSA.gov.

We've posted links of footage from CNN and 60 Minutes filming the actual viewing room and monitor."

Bob, not all people who fly visit this blog nor TSA.gov. All we are asking for is signage and pictures, placed properly at checkpoints, large enough - and that should mean poster size - so that all travelers have an opportunity to read about WBI and to see clearly for themselves how they will be seen. Only then will passengers who consent to being virtually strip searched be able to give "informed consent" to this indignity.

Some would also like to see an independent organization do a survey of passengers to get an accurate idea of its acceptance, as no one believes the TSA's "acceptance rate." We believe that if passengers truly understood what these machines do, your acceptance rate would drop dramatically.

RB said...

Anon - I'm not sure what you want to see. I've posted large pictures here on the blog as well as TSA.gov.

We've posted links of footage from CNN and 60 Minutes filming the actual viewing room and monitor.

As far as where the technology is, that info has always been on our web page. Go here.

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

September 19, 2009 12:49 AM

...................
But not at checkpoints and not far enough away from the machines allowing the soon to be victims sufficient time to understand that TSA is about to divest the traveler of all remaining dignity.

1) Provide images well before the Strip Search Machines that are actual full size images as seen by the operator.

2) Make sure people know what TSA is about to do before herding them into the machine.

3) Verbally offer each traveler the option to be screened in a less invasive manner before screening is started. Perhaps the TDC can do something of real value finally.

Bob said...

Link fixed. Thanks!

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

PDX TDC said...

A note on the paperless boarding passes that I've noticed from working the TDC location.

More than a few people seem to be confused about the difference between an electronic boarding pass which was emailed to their PDA (with a normal 1D barcode), and the special "mobile boarding pass" (with the square 2D barcode) required for this program. The machines are not currently set up to scan the regular boarding passes with the normal looking barcodes, either printed out or in your email on your PDA. It will only work with the square 2D barcode, which (I believe) have to be specifically requested as a "Mobile Boarding Pass".

Note: this is definitely true for the Continental program at PDX, but to my understanding this is how all the Continental machines are set up, and (most likely) the other boarding passes as well.

Anonymous said...

RB the person with all of the answers said

But not at checkpoints and not far enough away from the machines allowing the soon to be victims sufficient time to understand that TSA is about to divest the traveler of all remaining dignity.

1) Provide images well before the Strip Search Machines that are actual full size images as seen by the operator.

2) Make sure people know what TSA is about to do before herding them into the machine.

3) Verbally offer each traveler the option to be screened in a less invasive manner before screening is started. Perhaps the TDC can do something of real value finally.

September 19, 2009 8:56 AM


OK RB for #1 if you could contact every airport CEO and ask them for the permission to allow TSA to use up more of their space this may work.

#2 it's been publicized in how many different ways? 60 Minutes and what other news agencies.

#3 To verbally offer each passenger would take alot more manpower than TSA has. Signs, news coverage, word of mouth what more can be done? Do you really want TSA in the ticketing area talking to you because thats where they would have to start.

Get a life. These pictures are what the TSO sees to make them any larger would not be an accurate picture.

RB said...

Anonymous said...
RB the person with all of the answers said.....

Get a life. These pictures are what the TSO sees to make them any larger would not be an accurate picture.

September 19, 2009 12:58 PM
...................
Anon, Bob said the following: "Anon - I'm not sure what you want to see. I've posted large pictures here on the blog as well as TSA.gov.

We've posted links of footage from CNN and 60 Minutes filming the actual viewing room and monitor.

As far as where the technology is, that info has always been on our web page. Go here.

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

September 19, 2009 12:49 AM"


Since this is supposedly an open blog I suggested three reasonable things that I would like to see TSA do in regards to the MMW.

I have to ask though, are you stating that the images posted here are the same size and quality that the operator sees?

I really don't think so.

People are not being properly informed that they are about to be virtually Strip Searched.

That is just plain wrong.

Prior notification and acceptance should be required. If a person opts out then other screening methods should be used.

In fact, there is a bill in the United States Congress that would limit MMW to secondary screening. I would support that bill as long as TSA continues not providing adequate notification to travelers.

Signage should be provided that informs a person just what they are being asked to submit to.

These are all reasonable things.

Why would TSA back away from getting peoples consent prior to a very controversial procedure?

I suggest it is because the rate of refusal would be very high.

60 Minutes, CNN or any other media outlet is not the place for this information. It is at each and every checkpoint that has a Strip Search Machine installed.

Anon, you apparently have nothing of value of your own to contribute so attacking me is your only outlet.

Perhaps you should take your own advice and "get a life"!

TSOWilliamReed said...

Ok so now I have a question to you, the mass anons and of course the wonderful RB. Have any of you actually gone to an airport that has the scanner operational and examined it to see if there are no signs? Have any of you tried going up to it and asked for other forms of screening and have been denied? I am really curious if you have because honestly as a TSO I can not believe you at all that there is no signage in front of this machine that doesn't state that you have the option for other screening and that there are no pictures up on the signage in front of this machine of what the scans look like. All I hear is just assumptions and angry complaints based on unjustified biasness towards TSA.

Thanks for listening and I am happily awaiting your answers!

Also I don’t like the boarding pass scanner but only because it’s going to be awhile till we get something like that in Alaska. We don't even have the 3g network up here and also just got an internet speed over 3mb about a year ago, and that’s in south east Alaska that’s not even the north.

Anonymous said...

"Get a life. These pictures are what the TSO sees to make them any larger would not be an accurate picture."

How do you know that? Bob refuses to post images that are the same size and resolution as those seen by the operator of the machine.

TSOWilliamReed said...

The images posted on these blogs ARE the full size and resolution of the images seen by the operator. In fact they might even be larger than the actual screen in the viewing station. The CNN video is THE scanner viewing room and the monitor IS THE actual size and resolution of what the operator sees. Bob has given you the information you want you just don't want to accept it. Well the truth is there so too bad. Working for TSA I know how strict they are on signage. For you to tell me that there are no signs posted in front of that machine or no TSO's informing people of what that machine does is just crazy. We are required to tell the same guy with metal implants that has received the same hand wand 3000 times the same speech every time. You think TSA has a problem placing a couple large signs in front of a machine that say "You can opt out of this screening machine!" We already have signs posted that say you can ask for a screening in complete privacy at checkpoints. Yeah we totally want to invade your privacy. Prove to me that I am wrong, show me the evidence that there are no signs in front of that machine. Prove to me that no one is getting any information prior to walking through this machine and I will believe you. Until that happens all I am hearing is bias non-supported anti-TSA nonsense.

Anonymous said...

So how long will it be until those of us without a PDA or 'Cult-of-Jobs-Phone' get hassled for it?

Rob said...

Hopefully this actually speeds up boarding at airports.

Would be good to get some feedback from people that have actually used this new option.

When it comes time for my next trip through one of the airports that are using the system I will be giving it a go.

Thanks for the info.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

"So how long will it be until those of us without a PDA or 'Cult-of-Jobs-Phone' get hassled for it?"

Just be glad it isn't a permanent tattoo.

RB said...

Just be glad it isn't a permanent tattoo.

September 21, 2009 5:31 PM

The err a' of TSA has not yet ended!

Anonymous said...

"The images posted on these blogs ARE the full size and resolution of the images seen by the operator. In fact they might even be larger than the actual screen in the viewing station."

And you know this how...?

"Bob has given you the information you want you just don't want to accept it. Well the truth is there so too bad."

And you know this how...?

"Working for TSA I know how strict they are on signage."

Really? Because Bob has told us, among other things, that TSA's official policy with regard to 3.4-1-1 is that it is easier to post signs with inaccurate information than accurate information.

"For you to tell me that there are no signs posted in front of that machine or no TSO's informing people of what that machine does is just crazy."

Why? Numerous citizens have reported that the signage about the strip-search machines is hidden and/or placed far away from the machines themselves at many airports. And many citizens have reported that TSOs do not tell people they can decline to enter the virtual strip-search machine. TSA continues to be dishonest and disingenuous about these machines.

"You think TSA has a problem placing a couple large signs in front of a machine that say "You can opt out of this screening machine!""

We know TSA has a problem with that, since TSA refuses to do so.

Frank said...

Anon said... And you know this how...?

I said... And you know it is not how??

Randy said...

Thanks for this great information Bob.

job search said...

While paperless boarding pass is a great idea and though it sounds resource-saving, it may not necessarily speed up the boarding process.
The reasons are it is still linear processing and it may require some back-office workloads. And what if you lose your handset. Or if your handset doesn't happen to support that barcode or RFID tag scanning. Chances are it may create a double standard at boarding checkpoints.