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Re: MSP Airport

Posted: February 29th, 2016, 2:06 pm
by HiawathaGuy
I was really disappointed by the Star Tribune article the other day about this story:
http://www.startribune.com/long-securit ... 370305411/

It's yet another example of a sensational headline in search of clicks.
They interviewed four of five people who were worried they were going to miss their flights. The one comment by a TSA Agent said they woman would likely miss her flight. Wait times are approaching 45 min, for a variety of reasons. Namely new rules for searching airline employees, not having as many Pre Check random people, and spring break. That and the TSA is operating at staffing levels from 5 years ago. None of those are MSP's fault.

It wasn't until the very last paragraph of the article where they report that all of the people they talked to made their flights.
I just shook my head.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: February 29th, 2016, 2:10 pm
by talindsay
What's all this, "it's spring break" talk? Spring break is at least a week away for every school I can think of. Are there really any school districts on spring break already? It's still February.

MPS: last week of March
SPPS: first week of April
Anoka-Hennepin: third week of March
University of MN: third week of March

So what traffic is being generated by "spring break"?

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: February 29th, 2016, 2:19 pm
by HiawathaGuy
I think of "Spring Break" as a time when people venture south to warmer climates - not just people in school.
FWIW, my husband and I will be departing next Friday, which is actually his spring break at his campus. So it's not just about families and kids spring breaks - I've also seen dozens of my friends heading to Mexico (via Facebook) over the past 2 weeks as well. Avoiding the 'real' spring break times of March.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: February 29th, 2016, 2:22 pm
by amiller92
HiawathaGuy wrote:Wait times are approaching 45 min, for a variety of reasons.
I don't really care whose fault it is, waiting 45 minutes is completely unacceptable. Especially when it's for essentially nothing.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: February 29th, 2016, 11:05 pm
by mister.shoes
My college spring break was always the end of Feb/beginning of March. I just checked now and they're going with Holy Week this year, but I distinctly remember traveling this time of year ... 14 (!!!) years ago.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 1st, 2016, 12:45 pm
by matt91486
Was consolidation here purely motivated by reducing staffing levels? Otherwise I thought our having several small checkpoints across the terminal broke up the crowds quite well.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 1st, 2016, 3:14 pm
by HiawathaGuy
matt91486 wrote:Was consolidation here purely motivated by reducing staffing levels? Otherwise I thought our having several small checkpoints across the terminal broke up the crowds quite well.
I think it's an overall trend at other large airports. Fewer checkpoints with more scanning equipment. Thus allowing staffing levels to be more easily managed. I guess it could be to maintain current levels better, but hopefully not reduce. I mean, I think most everyone views TSA as a joke, but it's here in some fashion for the foreseeable future. I think the bigger change was so the airport could remodel the other side. They are adding two new large bathrooms on the shopping mall side, in place of two of the checkpoints, if I recall correctly. So it was about reusing the space better. And allowing them to remodel the ticketing side over the coming years too. The main ticketing concourse will be dramatically different by 2019.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 1st, 2016, 3:32 pm
by Didier
Does this affect checkpoint #10?

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 1st, 2016, 4:00 pm
by twinkess
I had to wait in line at #10 for 40 minutes on 12/22... at 5:40AM... ugh. The word is out on that one.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 1st, 2016, 4:52 pm
by HiawathaGuy
Didier wrote:Does this affect checkpoint #10?
This has extremely limited hours of operation now... like 2 hours/day.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 1st, 2016, 5:30 pm
by Mcgizz
HiawathaGuy wrote:
Didier wrote:Does this affect checkpoint #10?
This has extremely limited hours of operation now... like 2 hours/day.
No. It is open Monday to Friday 0530-1300. Lines are short.

Correction 1330*

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 3rd, 2016, 8:49 am
by HiawathaGuy
Sun Country bids to fly nonstop from Minneapolis to Havana
http://www.startribune.com/sun-country- ... 370881271/

Sun Country Airlines has applied with the U.S. government to operate two weekly nonstop flights from Minneapolis-St. Paul to Havana, the company confirmed Wednesday night.

This is cool to see and I hope they succeed. Delta has bid too, of course, but only direct from ATL & MIA.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 3rd, 2016, 11:25 am
by MNdible

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 4th, 2016, 1:48 pm
by grant1simons2
Hope they're a bit faster next week. I don't want to be in an hour long line my first time flying alone.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 4th, 2016, 2:17 pm
by BoredAgain
grant1simons2 wrote:Hope they're a bit faster next week. I don't want to be in an hour long line my first time flying alone.
I flew out on Tuesday (back on Thursday) and my wait in the TSA line was under 5 minutes. Those lines may have been day one problems (already resolved), bad timing, or just a fluke.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 4th, 2016, 2:25 pm
by HiawathaGuy
BoredAgain wrote:
grant1simons2 wrote:Hope they're a bit faster next week. I don't want to be in an hour long line my first time flying alone.
I flew out on Tuesday (back on Thursday) and my wait in the TSA line was under 5 minutes. Those lines may have been day one problems (already resolved), bad timing, or just a fluke.
No, the lines are at specific times of the day. And they likely won't be going anywhere, anytime soon:


TSA tells MSP fliers to get used to long lines at checkpoints
http://www.startribune.com/airport-offi ... 370981001/

But much of this is common sense and planning. If you're savvy, it really shouldn't be a big deal.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 4th, 2016, 2:43 pm
by jw138
From http://www.bizjournals.com/twincities/m ... 5-for.html:
TSA officials also took the opportunity to hawk the government's PreCheck program, in exchange for a background check and $85 will let fliers pass through security more quickly
...
That strategy, of course, could have been ripped directly out of the airlines' fee playbook:

1. Impose an inconvenience on travelers
2. Offer to reduce that inconvenience for money.
3. Say to travelers, "It's your choice!"

And it's worked great, at least for the airlines. They took in more than $38 billion in fees in 2014.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 4th, 2016, 3:09 pm
by amiller92
HiawathaGuy wrote: But much of this is common sense and planning. If you're savvy, it really shouldn't be a big deal.
No, it is a big deal. It's extraordinarily costly to have people waiting that long. Time is money, man.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 4th, 2016, 3:11 pm
by amiller92
jw138 wrote:From http://www.bizjournals.com/twincities/m ... 5-for.html:
TSA officials also took the opportunity to hawk the government's PreCheck program, in exchange for a background check and $85 will let fliers pass through security more quickly
...
That strategy, of course, could have been ripped directly out of the airlines' fee playbook:

1. Impose an inconvenience on travelers
2. Offer to reduce that inconvenience for money.
3. Say to travelers, "It's your choice!"

And it's worked great, at least for the airlines. They took in more than $38 billion in fees in 2014.
It's arguably worse, in that the fact that they will randomly assign you pre-check, and don't really do anything when you sign up for pre-check either, shows pretty clearly that the pre-check level of screening is sufficient for safety. They're doing the rest for show/fundraising.

Re: MSP Airport

Posted: March 4th, 2016, 3:33 pm
by jebr
The other problem (at least right now) with PreCheck is that not all airlines participate in it. Frontier and Spirit are the big two out of MSP that I can think of, though there are surely others that don't participate.