Wednesday, June 24, 2009

CLear shuts down

There are a lot of angry frequent fliers today. Verified Identity Pass, the company that offered the Clear program has shut down. For an annual fee, Clear helped travelers skirt through faster airport security checkpoints. Members of the Clear program had to go through an intensive screening process and pay membership fees of 178 to $199 per year. Because the company is in bad financial straits, Verified Identity Pass is not issuing refunds.

The company said it wasn't able to negotiate a deal with its creditors, and its Clear fast-lane security check service stopped operations abruptly late Monday. More than a quarter million customers won't get refunds of membership fees that ranged from $178 to $199 per year and many people bought multi-year memberships. Some Clear members found out via e-mail but many did not learn that the program was over until they showed up at the airport.