MOON TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Non-ticketed visitors have access to Pittsburgh International Airport’s gates, shops and restaurants as of Tuesday.
The “myPITpass” program, which was announced in late August, makes Pittsburgh the first airport in the country to allow such access since 9/11.
The TSA pilot program will allow guests beyond the security checkpoint for shopping, dining and greeting passengers year-round from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, with the possibility of additional hours and weekend days in coming months.
Security will not change, even for people with a “myPITpass.” Just like ticketed passengers, people with the one-day pass will still have to go through security and have their name vetted against the No Fly list.
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"We would expect a slow and steady trickle throughout the day, and that was the whole point with the hours that we picked, Monday through Friday, nine to five, missing our top times for people," said Bob Kerlik with the Allegheny Co. Airport Authority. "We want to make sure the lines are not affected."
The Association of Professional Flight Attendants objects to the program.
“This is an ill-conceived relaxation of security requirements and a dangerous precedent. We shouldn't be letting our guard down,” APFA President Bob Ross said in a statement. “Airports are not shopping malls. They are travel hubs, where security must always be the top priority.”
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APFA is also concerned that having shoppers in TSA security lines will lead to flight delays and more ticketed passengers missing flights.
"Our concern is this will enhance the possibility of additional security breaches or additional security issues," said Brian Morgan with APFA. "You have non-ticketed passengers who are now just roaming in airports for hours on end with no where that they should be going."
Cox Media Group