Flying Out of Sea-Tac Airport? Prepare for Infuriating Wait Times
If you are flying out of Sea-Tac Airport, prepare yourself for the possibility of infuriating wait times to get your luggage screened. Sometimes you can whip right through the TSA line with a 30-minute or less wait, but recently, travelers have reported having to wait forever just to get through the TSA luggage security check.
These lines have created wait times nearly THREE hours long at Sea-Tac airport. How infuriating! Many passengers are missing their flights out of Sea-Tac because of these huge lines and ridiculous wait times.
Don't get me wrong, I LOVE the Seattle Airport. There is none like it in terms of cleanliness, the art exhibits, and the regenerating feeling it gives me to soar above the clouds, reaching my dream travel destinations. I also love the restaurants and chocolate shops in Sea-Tac. But missing flights because of unnecessarily long wait times for TSA just isn't my cup of tea!
FIRST-HAND EXPERIENCES FROM PEOPLE WAITING 2+ HOURS IN SEA-TAC LINESOne traveler at Sea-Tac recorded this video that shows passengers in lines so long they had to loop around the airport’s 4th floor parking garage level.
“So the pandemic is over and now we have a queuedemic.” - Sarah. Percolating @arcdigg
“This is why I hate flying. We need #highspeedrail in America.” - Fred @fredevansdotnet
MY OWN PERSONAL EXPERIENCE WITH INFURIATING LONG LINES AT SEA-TAC
I have personal experience with this: This past June, my daughter was flying out of Sea-Tac to visit family. They were picking her up at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International airport. She was flying as an unaccompanied minor which meant that I first had to go to an airline agent to get my gate pass and fill out the Unaccompanied Minor Passenger paperwork.
The wait time for an agent was nearly 2 hours. We hadn’t even approached the TSA security lines yet! Through no fault of our own, my daughter ended up missing her flight to Atlanta even though we had arrived at the airport the recommended two (2) hours before the flight boarded. I was livid.
2 SHORT-TERM SOLUTIONS TO HAVING TO WAIT IN LONG LINES AT SEA-TAC
There has got to be a great solution to this frustrating problem at Sea-Tac. I actually have two great short-term suggestions:
1. Find another airport to fly out of--one that does not typically have long wait times if you're not willing to take a chance at SEA. The closest airports we have around these parts are Yakima (YKM), Pasco (PSC), and Portland International (PDX) airports.
2. Get your employer (or a sugar mama) to pay for you get you a CLEAR membership. Clear lets you skip those unfathomably long TSA security lines at many other American airports, including the one in Seattle. That sounds like a win-win to me! (At $189 per year, CLEAR is pricey, but if you travel a lot it would be worth the membership.)
WHAT IS CAUSING THESE INFURIATING LONG LINES AT SEA-TAC, ANYWAY?
KIRO 7 News interviewed passengers who were stuck in those long lines at Sea-Tac and they talked to airport officials to ask what was up with that. The response was that there was a limited supply of TSA workers at Sea-Tac.
I have seen other reports from passengers that said thousands of cruise ship passengers being dropped off at Sea-Tac were the cause for the swarms of travelers. When one of these cruise ships de-board, thousands of passengers head all at once to Sea-Tac airport to board their flights home.
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The Seattle-Tacoma International Airport is located at 17801 International Blvd in Seattle.
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