CLEAR is being bandied about as a strong possibility for “vaccine passports” that prove if a member has received a COVID-19 vaccination.
Both René and I love the biometric identification service used in several airports, stadiums, and museums. And if you’re not yet a member, keep in mind that Delta flyers — not just elites — can take advantage of some fairly significant CLEAR discounts!
What is CLEAR?
CLEAR uses fingerprint and retina scans to positively identify people at security checkpoints. It’s currently available at several dozen airports, stadiums, and other venues across the United States.
At airports, program members are greeted by CLEAR representatives (or “Ambassadors,” as the company calls them). A kiosk scans the member’s retinas to confirm their identity. It’s relatively hassle-free and greatly reduces touchpoint — something that’s critical in a COVID-19 world.
There’s no need for a picture ID (unless you’re randomly selected for TSA verification) — you are your identity! And it’s pretty hard to forge yourself (at least, for now…)
Once the passenger is verified, he or she is escorted to their applicable TSA line: standard screening or TSA Pre√.
René has long espoused CLEAR (even saying it’s better than chocolate! and declaring it a “must-have travel perk”!) and how it helps not just domestic passengers but those returning from international trips, as well. Since I signed up in 2016, it’s come in very helpful at LAX, MSP, Austin, and BWI (where the Pre√ line was 45 minutes!).
I’ve noticed its time savings is most significant during morning departures.
And CLEAR’s Health Pass allows you to add a COVID-19 lab result from over 30,000 eligible laboratories.
CLEAR is now offered at various stadiums and venues. As this television report details, CLEAR members can jump the line (similar to the airport experience). Membership is free for stadium visitors — however, the 100% discount is valid only at the stadium or venue where they register.
What if you want to use CLEAR at all their locations? Is there a way around the $179 annual fee?
CLEAR Discounts for Delta Air Lines Travelers
Best of all, CLEAR offers discounts to Delta Medallions, SkyMiles members, and Delta Amex cardholders.
The $179 annual fee is discounted to $119 for general SkyMiles members. In other words, you don’t even have to fly Delta. A SkyMiles account (which is free to create) entitles you the discount.
CLEAR knocks down the price to $109 for
- Platinum Medallions
- Gold Medallions
- Silver Medallions
- Delta SkyMiles credit cardholders
You don’t have to be a Delta Medallion to get the nearly 40% discount! Having a Delta Amex (for those not quite at Silver status) still entitles you to a nice discount.
Diamond Medallions pay $0 for CLEAR membership. Free. Zip. Zilch. Nada.
You can also add family members for an annual fee of $50 each.
If you were a paying CLEAR member before reaching Diamond Medallion status, there’s a chance you may be charged. Monitor the statements for whichever credit card you used to originally pay for CLEAR. If you are charged, call their customer service line (1-855-CLEARME or 1-855-253-2763). That’s what happened to me and the charge was credited back.
Stack with American Express Green Card CLEAR Statement Credit!
The American Express Green Card gives cardholders a $100 annual statement credit for their CLEAR purchases. That goes a nice way toward the card’s $150 annual fee. So if you hold a Delta Amex or are a Silver, Gold, or Platinum Medallion, that could knock your annual clear cost to just $9.
If you visit any of their airports (or other locations) on a semi-regular basis, I highly recommend getting CLEAR! And if it becomes the go-to app for proving COVID-19 test results and vaccinations, it’ll be even more vital.
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