CLEAR Re-Launching In The Fall To Provide Fast-Track For Airport Security

Gadget lovers have a particular hate for airport security. Even if they're trained professionals who fly on a weekly basis, there's just no quick way to get through the rigors involved in passing onto the sterile side. Those grey buckets become your worst enemy: before you know it, you've claimed five or six of them and taken up the whole belt, and the passengers behind you are glaring and growing increasingly impatient. Anyone who travels with numerous notebooks, cameras, hard drives, battery packs and lenses knows the pains of passing through airport security. Each laptop has to go in its own bin, and if you have too many cables, drives and other gizmos in your carry-on, you'll have to set those out apart as well.

A company by the name of CLEAR had provided a welcome alternative for a few years last decade, but a shortage of cash and a shortage of subscribers put them out of business last year. CLEAR was like a VIP security checkpoint, meant only for travelers who underwent a significant background check and was placed on a special list of travelers who could soar through security without nearly as much scrutiny. Once they shut down, everyone was shuffled back into the standard TSA lines. This past week, Alclear, LLC rescued CLEAR out of bankruptcy, paying around $6 million for the remaining assets of Verified Identity Pass.

Alclear is now planning to re-launch CLEAR in select major cities in the fall, with enrollment for new customers is expected to begin in the summer 2010. Better still, the subscription terms of nearly 160,000 previous members will be honored. If you haven't heard of CLEAR, it's a secure biometric identification platform that pledges predictability, expedience, and service for its members through airport security. New pricing plans will include: $179.00 per year flat fee for unlimited use or a family plan, for an additional $50.00 on top of the unlimited plan.

Caryn Seidman-Becker, Chairman and CEO of CLEAR, had this to say about the re-launch: "We are thrilled to re-launch CLEAR – a service with proven demand that will increase airport efficiency and security while delivering significant value to our customers. We are rebuilding CLEAR with our members and for our members. We are working to build our footprint and re-introduce the program. We look forward to partnering with airports nationwide, regulators and lawmakers to ensure CLEAR's success."

Maybe the friendly skies are about ready to get friendly again.