Gate Search Boarding Passes


Aug 20, 2002
Not sure if this has been brought up before, but what''s the deal with using the checkerboard markings to select passengers for the additional screening?
I know they want to have these passengers randomly selected but it seems to me that alerting someone that they will be searched (long before they attempt to board the plane) pretty much guarantees that this process will not catch any would-be terrorists.


Aug 20, 2002
There are 2 types of gate screening. random & selectee. You can be selected for random screening if the gate screeners aren't screening anyone as they require screening to be continuous. The checkerboard pattern means that you are a selectee whose names were selected by a computer program based on the way you bought your ticket. The TSA requires that all selectees be screened & that all airlines have a way to identify selectees. SWA uses the checkerboard pattern, other airlines use methods. Yes this means that the potentional hijacker knows that he is to be rescreened, but who said that the TSA is logical. When the test program of not doing gate screenings at LAX & Long Beach proves successful (& I can't see how it can fail unless an aircraft is hijacked from 1 of those airports) then there will be no gate screenings at any airport.

Cool Bananas

Aug 23, 2002
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I can't understand why they don't do a proper screening when you first go through security. If a passenger is considered high risk check them properly then.
I hope the LA area trial goes well can't see why not, and the rest of the US airports will return to normal.


Aug 19, 2002
[P]The gate screenings are a joke. I've been selected 4 of my last 7 trips (revenue and nonrev). [/P]
[P]Since our rebid, I am now on the gates again and see what a waste of money and time it is. The Express flights I worked the other day had 8 or 9 pax on most and they were all connecting passengers which means they've already been screened at the origination airport and have flown a flight. Someone has to be chosen to be searched again while we are boarding or else its a violation even though all were connecting passengers. For this it took 4 TSA agents a flight.[BR][BR]If the govt wants the selectee passengers to be special searched, then it should be done at the main checkpoint with passengers showing their boarding pass to identify who they are and unchecked in passengers either getting the random check done on them or made to check in at the counter before going through security. With the random screening at the door it makes it appear that the guys at the main checkpoint are incompetent and that there is a problem. They are the same TSA people doing both (in most cities) so they should be capable of doing it right the first time. The random screening at the door is nothing but a hassle and I dont see where it does anything to accomplish an extra level of security if the TSA screeners at the checkpoint are doing their job. Getting rid of the redundant screenings at the door would go a long way to help the industry be able to show the hassle factor has been lessened without compromising security.[/P]