Greg was all fired up over on Metblogs the other day about a plan to bring “Expert Traveler Lines” to MSP. As he explained via the PiPress, the plan is to provide separate lines for experienced travelers vs people who may take longer to navigate airport security.
I recently had a chance to see this plan in action in Denver. After navigating a Disney-line maze, you’re presented with signs where you self-select which line is most appropriate for you based on how fast you navigate security. They’re given skiing style black diamond and green circle treatment in Denver, but I don’t don’t know if that’s just local flavor.
It’s tough to read in my blurry Treo photo, but the bullets suggest that the “Expert” line is for those familiar with TSA procedures and are traveling light:
The Green line (Families and Special Assistance) suggests that it’s appropriate for people traveling with small children, strollers, groups, or are new to flying and need assistance.
Guess which line I chose?
Green! Why? Because there was no line.
The “Expert” line’s bullet points are a bit off. Personally, I don’t know of a business traveler who’s truly traveling light since they tend to have a laptop and possibly a change of close, toiletries, etc. with their in order to avoid checking luggage. However, they are familiar with procedures and are less likely to bring a line to a halt by forgetting to remove their cell phone before walking through a metal detector.
While I have my doubts about whether this moves people through security faster on average, I could see it reducing the aggravation of regular travelers who are dumbfounded by novice traveler’s inability to understand what’s metal.