SSSS or Getting home without an ID

I took the No ID Airport challenge at DTW the weekend before last to get back home. Although it’s good to know that you can get home if you forgot your ID, I don’t recommend it.

But if you do happen to not have your ID with you, here’s how you get home. First, hopefully you still have your wallet. If not, you might be in for a lot of hassle. Most people don’t plan on forgetting their ID, so if you don’t by habit print out your boarding passes, at least keep your flight confirmation code on you or your World Perks number (I fly NWA, YMMV with other airlines). This way you’ll at least be able to print a boarding pass. But usually you’ll need a special “selectee” boarding card marked “SSSS.” Not all the ticketing agents know what this is, so just tell them you need a boarding card, you don’t have an ID.


My agent was concerned, and asked for a credit card or WorldPerks card, which thankfully I had (and I had them associated with my ticket). He printed the card out and I was on my way though a special screening line. In fact, I would venture to say you can try to cut ahead or look for a “special” line to go through to get the “selectee” screening. This screening is pretty easy. They have an air blower dealie which smells bad, then you go through a standard metal-detector and then they inspect your carry-on (but not excessively).

Then you’re done… and you’re probably the lowest security risk in the airport. I’ve spent more time in DTW than any other, I think… except maybe some international airports. I actually like it quite a bit. There’s even birds flying in here and a Little Caesars!

I’d like to get a job that allows me to travel more. I really love riding in planes and hanging out in airports. There’s been opportunities for jobs that fly every week, for four days a week… I don’t think I could handle that. But, maybe once our review site generates more money we’ll start taking trips to different metro areas just to review restaurants.

2 Comments so far

  1. Kelly (unregistered) on July 26th, 2006 @ 10:51 am

    I have been using a Visa WorldPerks card for the past several years, and I love it.


  2. Erica (unregistered) on July 26th, 2006 @ 1:19 pm

    The new terminal at DTW is pretty snazzy (I’m from there, so I’ve been through it a lot). Worlds better than the older ones.



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