Have you ever wanted to “text” the TSA your thoughts or questions?
Well – now you can!
As if the TSA isn’t frustrating enough to deal with at the airport – if you want to get a “head start” – here’s how to text ‘em.
Apparently, the TSA is trying to be more “passenger focused” so they’ve launched a new service giving customers the chance to get their questions answered before their flight.
One can text “Travel” to AskTSA (275-872) and select from a list of menu options such as PreCheck, What’s Allowed, Identification, Medical Questions, Damages/Claims and Other.
The TSA claims “experts” are available to answer questions from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. – with “automated” responses 24 hours a day.
But let’s be honest for a moment – it’s not like the TSA actually knows their own rules anyways.
Imagine getting an “answer” from the TSA about what you are allowed to pack…
… only to have it confiscated when you show up to the airport!
It’s a disaster waiting to happen.
Interested in putting the new service to the test, The Points Guy reported their experience:
“First up, senior cruise writer Ashley Kosciolek, who’s about to embark on a multistop trip with ice skates and fishing lures in her carry-on bag, checked in with AskTSA.
It took several minutes for Ashley to hear back about the skates, which is a time lag I experienced as well. Although two to three minutes certainly isn’t long, it feels like the message might not have been received while you’re staring at your phone.
This ice skates answer offered the same information Ashley had found on the TSA website when she searched online.
For her fish hook inquiry, it took 13 hours (overnight) to get a reply. When answered, though, it seemed to have been sent by a person instead of a bot.”
The service sounds good in theory – but it’s likely to lead to more frustration.
Most people who need an immediate answer don’t have 13 hours to find out if they can bring something aboard their flight.
Personally, I’d avoid this service and save yourself the drama by going directly to the TSA website or even Googling any questionable items.
You’ll get an immediate answer – and won’t be going back and forth with a bot (until you get a real person) to see if you can take a slice of grandma’s apple pie with you on the plane.
But the travel trend seems to be moving towards this mode of communication – as even airline companies like Frontier Airlines have completely eliminated their customer service line – forcing customers to “live chat” with agents.
It will be interesting to see what types of questions folks ask the TSA and what responses they receive – and the likely crazy scenarios that will unfold.
We will keep you posted!
What are your thoughts on the new ability to “text” the TSA?
Will you take advantage of this new feature? Or do you think it’s a bad idea?
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