With the spate of chilling new terrorist attempts over the weekend, it’s semi-comforting that new TSA rules went into effect this week aimed at tightening airline security.
The Transportation Security Administration’s mandatory new rules for flight reservations require a passenger’s full name, gender and date of birth exactly as they appear on a non-expired government-issued photo ID (such as a driver’s license).
The additional data is now required for airline reservations on all domestic and international travel on U.S. airlines as well as foreign carriers who fly into and out of the U.S.
Called the Secure Flight Passenger Data (SFPD) program, it compares airline passenger information against U.S. government watch lists. The required information also helps to prevent misidentifications for those who are not on a watch list.
If accurate Secure Flight Passenger Data (SFPD) is not provided at the time of booking, the reservation may be canceled and the passenger will be denied boarding, according to the TSA.
If you’re making reservations for others, be sure to have their accurate SFPD because changing or updating information is not possible with all airlines.
But note that while the name provided to TSA must exactly match the government-issued ID, it does not have to exactly match the name on a frequent flyer account. However, travel agents say it’s a good idea to convert all your accounts to match the name on your ID to avoid any check-in problems.
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