Security at SFO

Old May 16, 16, 5:40 am
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Security at SFO

So I'm flying international out of SFO next Monday on UA. I have Pre-Check and two questions:

1) I know SFO uses a private contractor instead of the TSA. Does this mean SFO isn't experiencing the same security checkpoint issues many other airports are? (I.e., no excessive delays, Pre-Check not being open, etc.)

2) I checked SFO's website and it says that only the domestic terminals have Pre-Check. It looks like, however, I could clear security in T3 and walk to the international terminal. Is this a) possible and b) necessary, or is there Pre-Check in the international boarding area?
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Old May 16, 16, 7:13 am
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Yes, there is pre-check in the intl terminal. You may also use T3 security and go through the walkway after security. Many do that to access the Amex Lounge.

The non-pre-check lines can be lengthy, but I have not seen them to be as bad as in some other places.
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Old May 16, 16, 7:34 am
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Long ago when I lived in SF, the pre-check lines in international were hit or miss as to whether they were open. If the are not, going over to T3 to clear is quite easy.

I'm curious to know if SFO has been hit by the TSA problems present at other airports, since SFO is run by private security. It's now over 2 hours to clear at ORD, and pre-check is getting longer by the day.
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Old May 16, 16, 8:44 am
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Originally Posted by rjque View Post

I'm curious to know if SFO has been hit by the TSA problems present at other airports, since SFO is run by private security. It's now over 2 hours to clear at ORD, and pre-check is getting longer by the day.
I was the only person at pre-check T3 about 10 days ago. I had about a 2-minute line pre-check T2.
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Old May 16, 16, 10:41 am
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I've never waited more than 10 minutes in a Precheck line at SFO. Usually it's under 5 minutes.
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Old May 17, 16, 8:09 am
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Yep, pre-check available at the int'l terminals which has minimal wait times. The priority lines at the int'l terminals are usually longer than the normal lines, IME.
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Old May 17, 16, 10:35 am
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Originally Posted by dhuey View Post
I've never waited more than 10 minutes in a Precheck line at SFO. Usually it's under 5 minutes.
Roughly same experience, based on 20 times through in the past seven weeks, Terminal 3, including at heavy times - maybe my worst was 20 minutes, but usually 5-10.
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Old May 17, 16, 11:36 am
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Originally Posted by 365RoadWarrior View Post
Roughly same experience, based on 20 times through in the past seven weeks, Terminal 3, including at heavy times - maybe my worst was 20 minutes, but usually 5-10.
My longest SFO Precheck wait was T3 at the E concourse. I suspect that line is usually longer than the one at T3-F, which is tucked away next to the T3-International-G airside bridge.
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Old May 18, 16, 8:27 am
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Originally Posted by asimperson View Post
It looks like, however, I could clear security in T3 and walk to the international terminal.
You can only walk from T3 to the G side of the International Terminal, NOT the A gates.
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Old May 18, 16, 8:45 am
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How is SFO for united security? We are premier access (flying F award) but no precheck.
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Old May 18, 16, 3:45 pm
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Originally Posted by gaobest View Post
How is SFO for united security? We are premier access (flying F award) but no precheck.
I have Precheck, but I haven't noticed anything really bad (to me, >30 minutes) in the regular lines at SFO in recent years.

Still, I haven't been to SFO in over a month. Any regulars in this forum been there? It's been bad at other airports recently (e.g., Chicago), but I have yet to see big problems on the west coast.
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Old May 19, 16, 7:53 am
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Originally Posted by MDtR-Chicago View Post
You can only walk from T3 to the G side of the International Terminal, NOT the A gates.
The OP specified s/he was flying UA internationally. That's the G gates.
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Old May 23, 16, 10:07 pm
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Yeah, so no problems at the G checkpoint. The regular line looked fine too. I suspect the domestic terminals are more packed, but based on the feedback here and lack of stuff in the news it looks like SFO is at least somewhat immune from the current TSA crisis.
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Old May 24, 16, 11:22 am
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Originally Posted by asimperson View Post
Yeah, so no problems at the G checkpoint. The regular line looked fine too. I suspect the domestic terminals are more packed, but based on the feedback here and lack of stuff in the news it looks like SFO is at least somewhat immune from the current TSA crisis.
I haven't seen any news reports on long security waits out here. I think there would be lots of coverage if there were such problems.
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Old May 24, 16, 4:18 pm
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SFO uses private contractors not TSA personnel - maybe that's why.
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