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Be Prepared When Entering TSA Screening Lines

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Unless you fly private, going through TSA checkpoints is unavoidable. We’ve all been there, stuck behind a person who is ill-prepared for the process. Or maybe that’s been yourself. Either way, it can be frustrating. Below is a list of common mistakes to avoid and should make your airport security experience as smooth as possible.

Arriving Unprepared

You won’t be able to pass through security without your boarding pass and/or proper identification. If you are traveling internationally, you’ll also need your passport. There are some international destinations that require additional travel documents, be sure to consult your destination’s official website ahead of time.

If you’re flying overseas, you’ll also want to check the expiration date on your passport and your destination’s validity requirements; some countries require you to travel with a passport that does not expire for at least six months.

Give Yourself Plenty of Time

Give yourself plenty of time to avoid rushing through the airport. Airports are seeing travel levels that exceed pre-pandemic numbers, meaning more passengers are going through the screening process. It is essential to arrive early and prepared to allow for completion of every step of the travel process from curb to gate. There’s nothing worse than trying to make your way to the front of the security line because the wait is longer than expected and you didn’t give yourself enough time. Instead, arrive earlier than you think you’ll need to (at least two hours before your flight departs; three if you’re traveling internationally) and avoid the frantic rush.

Not Packing Strategically

One of the worst mistakes you can make when going through security is stowing the items that you’ll need in place that’s not readily accessible. Keep your boarding pass, ID, passport, and phone in your pocket or an outer compartment of your bag so you can easily grab them when needed. Remember, you’ll have to take some items out of your luggage such as computers, tablets, and other devices to go through security, so be prepared for this. Pack your liquids together in one easy-to-remove bag. Make sure they’re compliant with regulations and pre-pack them all together so that you can easily reach in your carry-on. Be sure to check regulations surrounding what’s permitted in your carry-on versus checked bag.

Packing Prohibited Items

An alarming number of travelers pack prohibited items in their luggage. Not only does this slow down the screening process for everyone, but it could also land you in some serious trouble. A carry-on bag that triggers an alarm will require a TSA officer to open the bag to resolve it. Visit the TSA website for more information on what is allowed and restricted through the screening process.

Dressing Uncomfortably

If you don’t have TSA Precheck, expect to remove your outerwear, shoes, and belt when going through security. Wear shoes that are easy to take off, especially if you’re traveling with children. Avoid strappy sandals and laces if you can. If you do have TSA Precheck, remember that if you’re traveling internationally, there’s no Precheck overseas, so you’ll have to go through the typical security check on your way home.

Invest in TSA Precheck

If you fly more than once or twice a year, TSA Precheck is worth the investment. People can travel with ease and experience a smoother screening process by enrolling in TSA Precheck. Eligible travelers do not need to remove shoes, belts, light outerwear, electronic devices larger than a cell phone, or travel size liquids from carry-on luggage. Another benefit of the program is that children 12 and under are permitted to use the TSA Precheck lane when traveling with an eligible parent or guardian on the same itinerary.

We hope you found these TSA mistakes to avoid useful for your next travel experience. Here at Ecko Worldwide Transportation, we wish you a successful trip and remember, we can provide service anywhere in the world.