5 Tips for Breezing through Airport Security Lines
Traveling through airport security is about as pleasant as salt in a paper cut. With added holiday traffic, crowds, and bad weather, you might as well pour on the lemon juice as well. Here are some tips to help you breeze through these airport security lines like a pro and avoid the sting:
1. Slip on / Slip off Shoes
When you pass through airport security, you are often required to remove your shoes and place them in a bin for the x-ray. Shoes that are easy to take on and off will make this step in the security process much easier. It is best to wear socks as well, so you do not have to walk in bare feet on the cold, dirty floor.
Pro Tip: Wear slipper shoes or flats with your dress shoes in you bag. Switch them out once you arrive to look great and remain comfortable on your trip!
2. Belts and Bling
Wear as little metal as possible. Pack your belts, watches, and jewelry in your carry-on to wear after you are through security. Remove everything from your pockets, and wear clothing with minimal decorations. Fancy pocket designs & even metallic thread can often trigger a notification on the screen and lead to an awkward pat-down.
Pro Tip: If you have a necklace you simply do not want to remove, swing it to your back to decrease awkwardness when TSA checks it.
3. Liquids and Laptops
Liquids are limited to one quart-sized bag with containers of not more than 3.4 oz. If you do not check a bag, this is a great time to put all your favorite lotions and shampoos into travel sized bottles in a clear, Ziploc bag.
Keep this bag and your laptop in easy-to-reach compartments on your luggage to set them in the bin through the line. Having these items in an easily accessible area will save you a lot of time and stress. Nothing adds to the stress like digging around in your bag while the line grows behind you.
Pro Tip: Some European countries also require people to remove tablets, but not shoes.
4. Lines and Gates
Larger airports often have multiple security lines. If you have time, try to figure out which one might be shortest, or which one leads you to the most direct route to your gate.
Here are some smartphone apps that can help you do just that!
If you have a friendly person checking you in and they are not busy, they will often tell you some tips and tricks of the airport. People love to show off their expertise and appreciate your interest.
5. TSA pre-check & Airline Status
If you have traveled in the last few years, you have likely seen the TSA pre-check lines. To qualify for these shorter lines, there is an online 5-minute application with a fee to cover the cost of a background check, fingerprinting, and identity verification. Once you have passed, you will be able to go through these shorter lines without having to remove your shoes, liquids, and laptops. Two words: Worth it!
For frequent travelers, several airlines provide status for people who fly more than a set amount of miles every year. This status can also be received on a one trip basis through an upgrade. It will allow you to go through a shorter line as well.
Interested in more tips and tricks to make your travel experience a great one? Connect with one of our knowledgeable and experienced travel agents!