The one thing that often makes travel a challenge for people is the idea of tacking the Airport Security Checkpoint. If there is one thing that you tend to learn from taking over twenty flight through over a dozen different airports is how to handle passing the security check point without any problems.
How I Started Out
The first few times that I went through airport security were my worst nightmares come true. I would have my bags all packed perfect, knowing what was where and then you would have to pull them open to get to your laptop to put separate, along with liquids and such.
I can remember multiple times when I was not prepared at all, pulling my laptop out. Then fishing through my pockets for phone, keys, wallet, coins, and the watch off my arm. It is easy enough to pull everything out in a matter of seconds and throw it in the tray. But then on top of that you need to remember your belt (with the metal buckle) and shoes (some have a metal brace).
The hardest part is trying to get it all back together once you are through the security check point, and making sure you have everything. All while a whole lot of other people are coming through behind you all trying to do the same.
How I Handle Security Now (plus a few tips)
Depending on the line of people I can have security handled in a very short time now. I literally am at the point where I can walk to security, open bag and place laptop in a tray, close bag and put on conveyer, walk through the gate, return laptop to bag and walk away. With the only additional step take off and put on shoes where required.
Achieving this all comes down to how you prepare for the trip through security. Which I hope the tips below will help you make this trip a lot easier.
- The first thing is be prepared. Find a place, you feel comfortable and transfer everything from your pockets and body that you would normally put in the tray to your carry on bag. This would mean your wallet, phone, keys, watch, jewellery, Ipod, camera, notebook, pens, and anything else that creates a bulge or is made of metal. This should include your Belt and money belt if carrying one. You can leave your belt to take off at the checkpoint if you really need it to keep your clothes where they should be.
- Pack your laptop close to the top or in an easy to get to place in your carry on luggage. The number of times I have watched someone having to go digging to find their laptop, so keep it easy to get to.
- Carry On Liquids are almost NEVER permitted through the security check point. This means no cans of soft drink, no bottled water, no liquor or any other liquids over 3oz in size. For Liquids of 3oz or smaller they generally MUST be in a clear zip lock bag of approximately 20x20cm. In addition in some cases approved duty free packaging may allow you to carry larger quantities. HOWEVER IT IS ADVISED TO CHECK WHAT IS AND IS NOT ALLOWED TO GO THROUGH SECURITY WITH THE AIRPORT YOU ARE TRAVELLING THROUGH. Medication is generally ok, as long as you follow the correct procedure, but otherwise err on the side of caution and leave it behind.
- There is a fairly common range of items that are not allowed through security at all. These include items such as any form of blade, firearms, nail clippers, scissors, explosives, ect. Most airports will post this limitations in a lot of different locations well before security. while some of them are common sense not to take with you for a flight, others you may not think about. If In doubt, LEAVE IT AT HOME.
- Finally in many airports you need to show some form of id and your boarding pass to security. Rather then trying to fumble around and put this away in the proper place or someone different to where you normally put it. I have never had a problem carrying these through the security gate.
These are pretty much all the things that I keep in mind when going through security. Keep in mind though that some airports may be different and can have higher or lower levels of security. The one thing that you should always remember is to use common sense, and don’t argue with the security officer. While some rules are bendable by discretion, you will find it more difficult if you raise your voice or get on the offensive right away.
Keeping these things in mind will generally make your time in the security area at any airport just a bit easier. Unfortunately the one thing that we cannot change is how other people handle this process. Even though you may be ready most other people will be very much unprepared for this so unfortunately patience is still needed.
Just remember that it the officer’s may be a little abrupt or rude at times, but think about it if you had to repeat the same thing to every person all day and argue over the same items that are not allowed constantly. You would probably be pulling your hair out by the end of the day, so if you make their job a little easier and be patient things should be much more smoothly for you.