Bill Connors, executive director of the National Business Travel Association in Washington and a participant in the American program at Reagan National, said frequent fliers have raved about the time savings. "It offers you a little more predictability on just what time you need to be at the airport," Connors said.
"As long as it's voluntary, it's got federal standards, and the privacy issues around your personal information are addressed, we're big proponents," Connors added. "I've got a lot of people who would give a DNA sample and blood to get through the airport faster."
Neil Bergquist, a Brighton pharmaceutical industry consultant who flew more than 50,000 miles on American last year, already holds a platinum AAdvantage card that gets him into a special security line but said he would welcome a Massport-run registered traveler service for other airlines.
The concept "doesn't represent, to me, any additional violation of privacy beyond what already happens when you travel," said Bergquist. "Plus, I have nothing to hide."
Establishing a Massport-run system could be complex, however. Representing the airport that originated two hijacked jets that crashed into New York's World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, Logan officials are cautious about implementing security systems that have not been widely adopted elsewhere. Logan has spent more than $200 million on improved security since then and remains one of the only US airports that still has a morning security-update meeting seven days a week where airport, airlines, TSA, State Police, and other officials share information about terrorist threats.
While Massport officials are eager to see if there is a way to maintain and expand a registered traveler program, Orlandella said Massport officials "need to see what it entails. There are definitely security issues."
This autumn, Logan passengers waited fewer than 10 minutes to get through security checkpoints. However, backups have periodically surged to as long as 39 minutes.
American Airlines is accusing Logan officials of "strong-arming" to crush competitive alternatives to the airport's new high-speed Internet access service.
To boost interest in the program, participants will probably get benefits such as discounts on parking and dining at the airport.
The Transportation Security Administration has ended the 14-month Registered Traveler Program, which expedited security screenings at five major airports for passengers who had gone through rigorous...