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Traveling? Learn The Rules

Dave At Pensacola Beach, FL

Last week I went to Gulf Shores, Alabama and Pensacola Beach, Florida. While I was at the airport, I noticed that there are people standing outside the cue lines for security telling everyone what is to be expected of them. Even after being told a lot of people were getting up to the screening point and had no clue what was going on – which ended up slowing down the line.

I’m not one to gripe and harp about things I see, but this one really got to me. I’m standing in line and I overhear this lady in front of me talking about traveling to this place last year and a different place the year before and another trip earlier this year. I thought to myself, this lady should make it through security easily – she’s an experienced traveler.

Let me stop right here and say, if you have never flown before or haven’t flown since before 9/11/01, you are not included in this rant. Everyone else that travels regularly or at least HAS traveled since 9/11 should know what the rules are – or at least come close.

Now back to this “experienced traveler”. She gets up to the security point and is wearing boots that lace up to her knees. She starts to take them off, that slows down the line. Then she has to dig into her suitcase to find her liquids – which weren’t in a zip-lock bag already. She then doesn’t take her laptop out of its bag and tries to send it through the x-ray machine. Security stops her and makes her take it out. She then tries to go through the metal detector wearing her coat. Security again stops her and makes her send her coat through the x-ray machine.

By this point my blood is boiling. I was wearing flip flops so I could just kick them off, I had already put my coat into my carry on so it could go through the machine. My liquids were in the baggy and it was in the front pocket of my carry on so I could easily get it and I had emptied my pockets into my carry on. Yes, I may be an experienced traveler, but I’m also prepared when I get to security so I don’t hold up the line.

I’m singling out this one lady, but I witnessed so many people doing basically the same thing that I felt the need to post this so you aren’t the one causing the slow downs and problems at the airport.

Rules:

1) Liquids of any kind must be in 3.2 ounce containers or less. They will not let you go with the 8 oz can of hairspray. This includes deodorant, toothpaste, mouthwash, hairspray, hair gel, shampoo, conditioner, perfume/cologne – ANY liquid. These liquids must all fit into ONE quart sized zip top plastic bag and be sent through the x-ray machine separately so they can see it.

2) You must take off your shoes and jacket/sweatshirt and send them through the x-ray machine. This means wear shoes that are easy to get on and off and wear a shirt under your sweatshirt – or you’ll get a pat down.

3) Take your laptop out of the bag and send it through x-ray separately.

4)Empty your pockets before going through the metal detector. Take the time while you are standing in line to empty your pockets into your carry on. This will save time.

5) Have your photo id/passport ready at the beginning of the security check point line so they can verify you are you.

6) Once everything has gone through x-ray and you’ve gone through the metal detector, collect your belongings quickly. Again, don’t dig through your bag to find something or check to make sure something is still there. The x-ray machine doesn’t have trolls living inside it going through your bag stealing your stuff.

If you do these few things, it will speed up the security check point and won’t tick the people off around you!

If you are traveling for Spring break or just a quick getaway, good luck and watch out for those random body searches! I got hit by one in Pensacola on the way back and was violated by a 60 year old man. Yes, everything you have heard about those intense pat downs is true. He stuck his fingers in the waist of my jeans (inside) and ran his hands all the way up my leg – if you know what I mean. I understand he was doing his job, but WOW. If you enjoy that, go through the security point 2 times! HAHA

Be safe and happy travels!

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