Tips: Be Prepared For Airport Security

As summer travel heats up, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) reminds travelers to be prepared and plan ahead for airport security procedures.

To prepare for summer travel, TSA is working with the aviation industry to ensure the highest levels of security for all travelers. TSA also has Family Lanes at every security checkpoint, designed to allow infrequent travelers or those with special needs more time to process through the security checkpoint. In addition, our highly trained security officers are also prepared for your travel and are dedicated to ensuring your safety. Resources for travelers are available at, including travel tips and a detailed list of prohibited items, like fireworks.

"TSA encourages passengers to be ready for summer travel by taking a moment to think about airport security procedures," said TSA Acting Administrator Gale Rossides. "Passengers can help improve security for everyone and allow our security officers to perform their vital security mission effectively, simply by coming prepared."

TSA Travel Tips:

Be prepared for screening. Passengers should keep in mind a few simple steps to security.

  • Show valid government-issued ID and boarding pass.
  • Take out liquids (in a baggie) and laptops.
  • Take off shoes and jackets.

When approaching the security checkpoint, passengers will be asked to present a boarding pass and government-issued identification -- identity matters and TSA needs to validate passenger ID.

Removing footwear for X-ray screening is required. Wearing footwear that can be easily removed helps speed the process. Improvised explosive devices remain the primary threat to aircraft and terrorists have concealed items in shoes. X-raying shoes allows TSA to get a closer look. By requiring all passengers to remove shoes for X-ray screening, we increase security.

Remember the 3-1-1 for carrying liquids, gels and aerosols through the checkpoint. 3 ounce bottles or less for all liquids, gels and aerosols placed in a 1 quart-sized, clear, plastic, zip-top bag; 1 bag per passenger placed separately in a security bin for X-ray screening. This liquid restriction is in place because of the known risk of liquid explosives and applies only to carry-on bags. Larger quantities may be placed in checked baggage.

Stay Alert and Aware. TSA reminds passengers that they can play a role in keeping our nation's transportation systems safe. An alert and engaged public is one of TSA's layers of security. TSA encourages the traveling public to report suspicious bags or behavior. By remaining aware of their surroundings, the traveling public can help TSA ensure transportation remains safe and secure.

Handle prohibited items properly. Remember that firearms, ammunition and knives are prohibited at the passenger checkpoint and in the aircraft cabin. All fireworks are explosive materials and are not permitted in checked or carry-on baggage. Use Family Lanes. TSA expanded its popular Family Lane concept to every security checkpoint in America in November.

The lanes, part of TSA's Diamond Self-Select program, allow families, individuals unfamiliar with air travel procedures and travelers with special needs to go through security at their own pace.

Prepare before getting to the airport. Travel tips for parents, persons with special needs and the general public, lists of prohibited items and much more can be found on the TSA Web site at Knowing what to expect makes the process easier for all travelers.

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