Greeting Process

We’re excited that you want to come greet with us! Here is a little bit of information about our sign up process.

Types of Greeting: Our Honor Flights arrive at Dulles International Airport (IAD) on either scheduled commercial flights or planes that the hub has chartered.  Occasionally, we also receive special charter flights at Signature Flight Services, a private terminal at Dulles. Depending on different factors with the hub and the airport, we have the option to greet outside TSA security (Outside greeter signup) or inside TSA security (Inside greeter signup). For flights that have Inside greeter sign-up, you will see this as a separate entry on the signup form.

Outside greeter signup: This is the signup that greeters will use the most for a few reasons. You are NOT required to provide your personal information (date of birth) because you will not be crossing through TSA security to greet. You will be in the public area of the main terminal and you will typically get to spend a little more time greeting our heroes. This option is the ONLY OPTION for GROUPS. This is also recommended for first time or new volunteers. You can get a feel for how our group works, what a greeting is like, and what the expectations are for our greeters. This really is my favorite place to greet.

Inside greeter signup: This is the signup that allows us to have volunteers go through TSA screening to greet our veterans at the gate and to help us get the veterans through the airport in a timely manner to get to their buses. There is limited time to speak to the veterans, as we are trying to get them on their way to DC. This option does require you to provide your personal information on our website so that we can give this information to the airline ahead of time for gate passes (GAPS). Please be sure your email address is typed in correctly. This is our way of communicating with you about the flight. You will have to pass through TSA screening to go to the gate. There are limited number of gate passes for our greeters and this is at the discretion of the airline.  Another important point to consider is that you have to remain inside TSA security for the entire time the flight is unloading. You will not be allowed to cross back and forth inside and outside of security.  You also need to be at the airport 90 minutes before the flight is scheduled to arrive. If you are not, the escorts must leave without you. This is not recommended for first time greeters.

Once you sign up for a flight, you will receive a confirmation screen that your information has been submitted and you will also receive a confirmation email.  You will receive instructions about parking, where to meet, etc. via email between 48-36 hours before the flight.

Signups are taken down from the website between 48-36 hours before the flight in order to be able to get the information to the airport, the airline, the parking authority, and to our leads to prepare for the flight. 

Greeting the veterans: As the Veterans disembark, the greeters will clap and cheer. As each Veteran passes by, please thank them for their service, welcome them to Washington, D.C., and/or wish them well in their day, along with a heartfelt “Thank You!” With the COVID restrictions still in place, please do not approach them for a hug or a handshake.

Reasonable sized banners/signs, U.S. flags, are allowed (remember, you will likely have to hold them while clapping). Please do NOT bring balloons.

Veterans love it when active military personnel come in uniform. We flank both sides of the exit from the mobile lounge in this order: local WWII Heroes; Active Duty Military; Retired Military/Veterans; and then to greeters all the way out to the buses.

If you have any questions while you are at the airport, please see someone in the bright yellow shirts. They are our seasoned volunteers and they will do their best to provide the information you need! If you have any other questions about signups, please email us at heroeswelcomeiad@gmail.com.

We can’t wait for you to experience a greeting with us!!!