The Los Angeles International Airport is one of the busiest airports in the nation/world. A current modernisation project will bring even more gates to the International Terminal of LAX.
During peak times, usually around 7 p.m. – 10 p.m., the security lines are packed with people. No wonder with all the big planes, like the A380, leaving from here all the time. Some of the planes can carry almost 600 passengers.
You found a cheap Economy-Class ticket to Europe or somewhere else in the world and are all excited to hop on the plane and go. Your excitement dies down pretty quick once you see the security lines and even more once you are standing in the line.
Everyone not holding a premium class ticket, like Business or First Class, has to stand in a long line which moves sometimes very slow. For such a big and important airport like LAX, it’s surprising that they don’t have a TSA Pre-Check line at the security checkpoint. Even tho some of the international carriers are TSA Pre-check conform like Lufthansa.
Now you don’t want to spend 45 minutes or more in line just to get through security. You want to enjoy the pretty amazing Tom Bradley International Terminal and might even use a lounge if you are a Priority Pass member.
How to get through security faster
Here’s what you have to do. You arrive with your preferred mode of transportation and check-in with your airline, drop your bags, and get your boarding pass.
Now here comes the important part. You are not following the signs to the gates and security checkpoint. You turn around and walk straight outside of the terminal. Once outside you make a right and follow the walkway to Terminal 4. Go upstairs and get in line for the security checkpoint. The line here is usually not as bad as inside the Tom Bradly International Terminal. Have a little bit of patience and you are through security.
Once you are through security go right and up the escalator and follow the walkway to the international terminal (Gates 130-159). Stay on the same floor and pass the escalator which goes down one level. Walk around the corner at the end and you are at the top floor of the international terminal. To your left, you will pass the Korean Airlines Lounge. You can use it if you are a Priority Pass member or have elite status with Skyteam. Otherwise, take either the elevator down to the gates or continue on straight and you will end up at some restaurants.
Wasn’t that easy? I used this method to use the Korean Airlines Lounge even tho I was flying out of Terminal 3 with Virgin America.
How to use TSA Pre-Check for Tom Bradley International Terminal
You basically do the same as above. You check in with your airline, drop your bags and get your boarding pass. Walk outside of the terminal and make a right. Enter Terminal 4 and walk down all the way to the end. The escalator there brings you upstairs to the TSA Pre-Check lane.
Once through security just keep walking straight ahead. You will pass the regular security checkpoints on your right and you keep walking straight. Follow the walkway to the international terminal. Don’t use the escalator going down, keep on walking and walk around the corner at the end of the hallway. You are now inside the international terminal on the upper floor where some lounges and restaurants are located. You can use the elevator coming up to your left to go down to the gates or keep on walking to sit at one of the restaurants and enjoy the views of this beautiful terminal.
How to find out if the line is long at the security checkpoint?
When people are already in line on the same floor as they check in, then the line is huge. The security checkpoints are located one level up and you have to make it there first. So if you are down there and the line is barely moving. Try above method.