Our Northwest

Traveling soon? Here's how to make it easier

Saturday, June 1, 2019by  PEMCO Insurance

Traveling any time of the year can be stressful, whether it's for work or for vacation, but during the holidays or busy summer months, it's even more challenging. We spoke with some of PEMCO's most frequent fliers to compile these tips and tricks.

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Flying Alaska Air to Spokane or Portland? Take the fast lane through security.

If you're flying to Spokane or Portland with Alaska Air, you can skip the long line by using the Premium or express security line, even if you're not an MVP. Just show your ID and boarding pass. At SeaTac, it's usually to the right side of where the main line forms.

If you're a frequent flier, get a Global Entry or Clear card.

Global Entry is a program run by the US Government that allows fast entry into the country at all airports in the United States. When you arrive at the airport, instead of heading for the lines, go to the Global Entry kiosk where you simply present your passport or U.S. resident card and scan your fingertips for verification. Then you're on your way!

It requires a simple online application process and a short interview. The benefits are both domestic and international, so it'll come in handy when you're traveling outside the U.S. 

The Clear program has similar benefits but is limited to about 40 domestic airports – but it also gets you into Safeco Field and other stadiums in the U.S.

An enhanced driver's license will be required for 2020

If you're renewing your license in the near future, get the enhanced version as it will be required starting in 2020. KIRO 7 has a great summary of what you need to know.

More tips from our frequent fliers

  1. Roll your clothing to minimize wrinkles and to fit more into your suitcase.

  2. For your carry-ons, put all your liquids and gels into easily removable small baggies. This way you can unpack and repack more quickly as you move through security.

  3. If you're being dropped off at SeaTac and the departures line is backed up, have your driver go to Arrivals instead. You can take the escalator up to check-in and security.

  4. Arrive early! Bags must be checked 45 minutes before departure, and leaving time for unexpected security line delays is wise. 

And finally, be patient! There are variables that are outside your control, so don't stress about the little stuff.

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