For those not familiar, CLEAR verifies your identity using biometrics. You can use either your eyes or face to have your identity verified which expedites the document check portion of the TSA security process. You’ll then enter either TSA PreCheck or general screening depending on your status, aiming to reduce the overall amount of time spent at security.
Prior to the pandemic, CLEAR sometimes offered time savings as it could reduce the amount of time you spent in line at security if you were at a busy airport during a busy time, however with travel slashed, there are hardly the lines as before, which is why CLEAR won’t save you much time these days.
As a Delta Platinum Medallion member, I could of renewed my membership for $109 for another year, but it’s hard to justify that cost for several reasons. I couldn’t imagine paying regular price of $179 for this service right now.
As mentioned earlier, as regular flier out of JFK, I’ve yet to experience a wait of over 5 minutes in the TSA PreCheck, so I wouldn’t really benefit from CLEAR here.
CLEAR isn’t even that fast. More often than not you’ll get to the CLEAR machine, and then one of the ambassadors has to sign on to the machine, then you have to verify your identity before you’ve passed. CLEAR also has random inspections, where your ID may still need to be verified by the TSA screener.
Let’s not forget the CLEAR isn’t at every airport either. If you’re traveling into smaller airports, there’s a good chance you won’t see CLEAR yet. With the pandemic shifting the way we travel, I’ve decided to cancel my CLEAR membership, and will re-evaluate once travel starts to pick up.
Lastly, recently th TSA has re-invented the security process. Instead of having your boarding pass marked up, you just insert your ID into a machine and it quickly pulls up your flight information for the TSA agent to see.
What are your thoughts on CLEAR? Have you kept your CLEAR membership, or have you also decided to forgo it for the time being? Feel free to share your thoughts below.