When it comes to traveling, the one thing that most people dread most is going through the various airport security and counter check-ins. But it doesn’t have to be such a pain. So long as you prepare in advance and stick to plain manners and fashion you should hopefully be able to get through with no problems at all. We’re going to provide a few helpful hints that you can use to make your next trip go smoothly.
First off, you want to make sure to be adequately prepared and organized. This sounds like a pretty obvious hint, but it is surprisingly how much a sloppy packing job can cause problems when going through security. If you pack neatly and leave larger items (such as laptops) in an easily accessible area, it can save a lot of aggravation for both yourself and the TSA screeners.
Since many airlines are charging for check-in luggage, it’s always tempting to travel with just carry-on luggage, such as backpacks and briefcases, as this saves both time and money. But just make sure to know what you can and cannot place in carry-on luggage. Sporting goods and tools need to be checked in, as do knives, scissors, and other sharp utensils. Most significantly, make sure that all liquid and gel containers are less than 4 ounces. This can cause problems with a lot of toiletries, and I’ve certainly the past have had to be held up for carrying on a full-sized shampoo bottle or water bottle, which can be quite the hassle for yourself, the TSA employee, as well as the people waiting behind you! Fortunately most pharmacies offer toiletries in airline-approved sizes, as to airport shops (although they’ll charge you an arm and a leg).
Believe it or not what you wear can also make a difference when it comes to airport travelling. In this case, the key is to dress smart, but simple. The fact of the matter is, you are more likely to be randomly screened if you are wearing flashy clothing or clothing that someone might deem offensive, and the same can be true if you look like a slob. Dressing simply and neatly will solve this problem and will also enable you to travel more comfortably as well.
Along with the limitations on liquid and gel containers, the other big post-9/11 security change is that all passengers are required to take their shoes off when going though checkout. So it’s best to opt for flip-flops, slippers, boat shoes, loafers, or any type of footwear that is easy to remove and put back on. You certainly don’t want to be that guy holding up the screening line because you are wearing boots or other footwear that’s hard to take off! Similarly, make sure not to wear excessive jewelry or earrings, as these will have to be taken off for screening as well.
Above all, the important thing is to remain calm at all times; this is the true hallmark of a savvy traveler. Sometimes you might find yourself stuck with unforeseen delays and complications, even if you arrive early and have everything organized. Maintaining your cool, having a polite veneer, and following the golden rule will make travelling less stressful, for both yourself and your fellow travelers.
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