Volume 2, Issue 3 October 2002

Volume 2, Issue 3
October 2002

Airline Passengers Give High Marks to Security Screening Procedures at Nations Airports

More than eight out of ten airline passengers report that, for their most recent flight, they waited less than 30 minutes at the security checkpoint for their airline and they are somewhat or very satisfied with their wait time (Figure1).

Results from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics Omnibus Survey show that an average of about 38 percent of US residents have flown on a commercial airline at least once during the twelve months prior to the survey. The majority of these airline passengers believe the thoroughness of passenger screening is adequate and an increasing number of passengers report that they have a high level of confidence in the ability of screeners to keep air travel secure from individuals with hostile intentions (Figure2).

About three out of four passengers report that they are satisfied or very satisfied with the courtesy of security screeners (79 percent) and with their overall experience at screening checkpoints (77 percent).

About seven out of ten airline passengers report that the changes in screening procedures since September 11, 2001 have had no effect on their inclination to travel by air (Figure 3).

US residents who had not flown during the twelve months prior to the survey were also asked how confident they are in screening procedures. While the numbers are increasing, the most recent survey shows that only 37 percent of residents who have not flown in the past year have a high level of confidence that screening procedures will make air travel secure.

Source and Accuracy Statements

Data presented in this issue of OmniStats are taken from several issues of the BTS Omnibus Household Survey. Data are preliminary and are subject to change. The target population for the survey is the US non-institutionalized adult population (18 years of age or older). Results are based on a completed sample of 1000+ households that are randomly selected using a list-assisted random digit dialing (RDD) methodology. The findings summarized in this report are estimates derived from a sample survey. Sample surveys contain two major components of error-sampling and nonsampling error.

Sampling Error. Sampling error occurs because findings are based on a sample, rather than on the entire population. The total respondent pool for the Omnibus Survey is 1,000+ for an estimated sampling error of about ±3% at the 95% confidence level. Sampling error will be larger for sample subgroups (such as males or disabled persons) and for survey items that do not apply to all members of the sample (e.g. sample members who flew on a commercial airline during the 30 days prior to the survey). Standard error estimates for each Omnibus Survey item are available on the BTS website for the Omnibus Survey at http://www.bts.gov/omnibus/household/index.html. After selecting the month of interest, choose "Marginal Frequency Distributions."

Nonsampling Error. Estimates are subject to various errors during the survey process, such as data collection, response coding, transcription, and data editing errors. These errors would also occur if a complete census was conducted under the same conditions as the sample survey. Explicit measures of the effects of these errors are not available. However, stringent quality control procedures were followed during data entry and the questionnaire was reviewed and pretested in an effort to minimize nonsampling errors associated with data entry and questionnaire design. Nonresponse error is a function of both the nonresponse rate and the differences, if any, between respondents and nonrespondents

Please contact the following individuals for additional information about:
the survey: lori.putman@bts.gov
this report: june.jones@bts.gov
press contact: david.smallen@bts.gov