Hotel loyalty program comes with faster airport screening


For a limited time, members of a hotel loyalty program can get free access to faster security lines at airports around the country.

Loews Hotels & Resorts, based in New York, announced Monday that it will pay the $100 application fee for members of its YouFirst Platinum loyalty program who want to sign up for a government program to let pre-screened frequent travelers go through expedited airport checkpoints.

But the offer only extends to its current 2,400 members of the program and will expire in 60 days. Loews hotel officials said they may consider expanding the offer to new members.


The hotel is offering to pay the application fee for Global Entry, a U.S. Customs and Border Patrol initiative to speed up the process for international travelers to enter the country.

Travelers who enroll in Global Entry are also registered to participate in PreCheck, a program operated by the Transportation Security Administration that lets pre-screened frequent travelers zip through airport screening lines without removing their shoes, jackets and belts and pulling laptops from carry-on bags.

TSA PreCheck is offered at 25 airports for frequent travelers on Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, United Airlines and US Airways. The program is intended to speed the entire security process by letting low-risk, frequent travelers who volunteer background information use expedited security lines.

“To be the first hotel brand to offer this service demonstrates that we understand the needs of travelers, especially those who travel frequently for business,” said Paul Whetsell, president and chief executive of Loews Hotels & Resorts.


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