Airlines

Travel Tip: Booked Through Orbitz, etc? TSA Pre Check Might Not Show Up

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Ever had this problem? You book your flight on a third-party site like Expedia or Orbitz, you carefully input your Known Traveler Number along with your frequent flyer number, but TSA Pre check never shows up on your boarding pass?

Reader Dan shared he’s had this problem with the last three airlines he’s flown. Turns out even when Orbitz is how you got free TSA pre check, you can’t count on them to transmit that information to the airline along with your frequent flyer number.

Dulles TSA Pre-check line backed up

Fortunately, there’s an easy, if not slightly annoying fix. Take a minute to go to every airline you have a frequent flyer account with and add your Known Traveler Number to your profile. This ensures whenever you book flights through a third party site like Orbitz, Travelocity, etc the airline will already have TSA pre check status on file.

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11 Comments

  1. CThomas

    March 29, 2016 at 10:47 pm

    A company who regularly hires me for freelance work books flights through Egencia/Concur. Each Southwest Airlines trip for the last three years has required me to call up SWA and have them manually put my KTN on each reservation — despite the fact it’s already in my profile. Apparently, this is a known (and pretty annoying) bug. A SWA telephone CSR lamented to me last week that she gets a lot of calls from people who need their KTNs manually added to PNRs. (Sorry for all the abbreviations in that last sentence! :))

    • Michael

      March 29, 2016 at 11:10 pm

      Acronyms read perfectly…should work for the average airline blog reader as well AFAIK

    • Keri Anderson

      March 30, 2016 at 12:06 pm

      That’s really frustrating! I know at some point I would forget to call and that would be the flight I arrived late at the airport 🙁

    • Zachness

      March 30, 2016 at 7:35 pm

      Even direct booking is an issue, as I’ve had to call and not only get the KTN added but ensure that my middle name appears on the reservation. Delta and Alaska seem to get it fine. Oh well, at least with WN you can look at your reservation and see the TSA PreCheck logo to ensure it’s in place (the phone agent can see it too).

  2. Hitman

    March 30, 2016 at 12:59 am

    This did not work for me on American Airlines. I have my GOEs on my profile, but the ticket prints without Pre.

    Had to go all the way to customer service to get my correct boarding ticket.

    After speaking to 5 AA reps, the told me to speak with tsa.

    • Keri Anderson

      March 30, 2016 at 12:05 pm

      Ooof, that is really frustrating!

    • northernlights

      October 9, 2016 at 1:49 pm

      I have had the EXACT same problem and there is nobody at “TSA” who can “help me”. I paid for the service and now I’m not getting what I paid for. It would be great to talk to someone to find out “what happened” and how to fix it. Anybody?

      • F. P.

        October 26, 2016 at 1:38 am

        @northernlights
        Exactly. I have a KTN and Delta won’t acknowledge that on my boarding tickets claiming TSA rules which are nowhere to be found. And Delta having FAQ’s that state that for consistent TSA pre approval you should enrol in TSA pre approval. Stupidity.

  3. Mike C

    November 20, 2016 at 3:58 pm

    Yep, me too, if I book Orbitz and use Alaska, no TSA-Pre and my KTN is on file with both. No one can help, so I am screwed. Tome and money for NOTHING.

  4. Mike C

    November 20, 2016 at 4:44 pm

    More information- travel agency systems, like Orbitz, do not always have your name correct, and maybe your airline too. For example, when you registered with TSA you had to use your full name. At Orbitz, your default profile name might be different. You have to add a second traveler ID to the account with the exact same name as on file with TSA, and then you have to make sure you use that exact name when you book. You also have to make sure your profile with the airline you chose also has the exact same name. If there isn’t exact matching of the names, character for character, across the systems, TSA Pre will not work.

  5. Cary

    July 4, 2017 at 6:15 pm

    I have had luck adding my KTN WHILE checking in at the kiosk. I’ve just had an agent add it for me on the spot.

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