Shoes on, shoes off. This way, not that way. What You Really Need to Know to Get Through the Security Faster

As angry travelers reported increased missed flights due to reported problems with TSA screening, efforts have been made to help travelers do their part to simplify the screening process.

The Transportation Safety Administration has the following packing tips:

  • Pack an organized carry-on bag using layers – a layer of clothes, then electronics, more clothes, and then any heavier items. This will help security officers see what’s in your bag.
  • Have your boarding pass and government-issued ID ready for inspection when you get to the checkpoint.
  • Remove your jacket and shoes and place them in a bin.
  • Place any oversized (laptops, full-size video game consoles, DVD players and video cameras that use cassettes) in a separate bin. Other smaller electronics, such as iPods, can stay in your carry-on bag.
  • Follow the 3-1-1 for carry-ons: 3-ounce bottle or less (by volume); 1 quart-sized, clear, plastic, zip-top bag; 1 bag per passenger placed in screening bin.
  • When in doubt, leave it out. If you’re not sure about whether you can bring an item through the checkpoint, put it in your checked bag or leave it at home.
  • Do not wrap gifts. If a security officer needs to inspect a package, they may have to unwrap your gift.
  • Remove your infants and children from baby carriers and strollers and take them through the metal detector with you. Strollers and baby carriers go through the X-ray machine with your bags. If possible, collapse your stroller before you get to the metal detector.
  • Passengers with special circumstances may include travelers with disabilities or medical conditions, Wounded Warriors, passengers who wear specific religious clothing or head coverings and passengers struggling with understanding checkpoint procedures. Travelers also may request a Passenger Support specialist ahead of time by calling the TSA Cares hotline at 1-855-787-2227.
  • Consider signing up for the Global Reentry Program. The $100 fee, which is good for five years, entitles you to skip long customs lines when re-entering the country and entitles you to access the shorter TSA precheck line.

Go to for a complete list of travel rules.