Lifestyle West Blog

Airport Security: Breeze Through By Following These Tips

September 28, 2012

The Transportation Security Administration is responsible for protecting the nation’s transportation system. Among many other things, they oversee the security procedures in airports so travelers can move from place to place with as much safety as possible. One of these procedures involves the security checkpoints at the airport.

We’ve all been there... waiting in a long line only to meet mass congestion when you get to the conveyor belt while people try and take off shoes, extract laptops, empty pockets, find boarding passes—and oh, yes—remove belts and jewelry, all simultaneously. 

There are a few things you can do ahead of time to avoid being “that guy” or “that lady” at whom all the other passengers roll their eyes.

Airport Security Checkpoint by 25kim (Flickr)

Make going through the security checkpoint easier by packing smart.

Photo by 25kim (Flickr)

Follow the liquids rules

Despite the plethora of signage, many travelers still arrive at security checkpoints with liquids in bottles that are too big and are not neatly tucked into plastic zipper locked baggies. Follow the 3-1-1 rule: 3.4 ounce (100ml) bottle or less (by volume) ; 1 quart-sized, clear, plastic, zip-top bag; 1 bag per passenger placed in screening bin.

Most Canadian airports will provide 1L clear plastic bags, marked with the official Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) logo, before you head through the security gates.

Pack your bling in your suitcase

Back in the day, people used to dress in their Sunday best for airline travel. Now, we all understand that it isn’t about looking your best—it’s about getting through quickly. As such, it is perfectly ok to travel without wearing your best jewelry. Large watches, heavy bracelets, earrings—they will need to be taken off and placed in the plastic bins, not only delaying your time through security, but also increasing the risk that you might drop or forget something.

Dress to undress

Almost every checkpoint will ask you to remove your shoes. Wear shoes that slip on and off easily and don’t require a lot of fuss. Also avoid big bulky sweaters; you’ll need to remove them or will have to be patted down. That belt with the metal buckle might look nice, but you will need to take it off. If you wear a hat or head covering that may give the appearance of having something hidden underneath, you’ll have to remove it. Taking all these things into consideration as you plan your travel wear will help you move through security easier.

Have your electronics organized

Laptops and phones need to be taken out of carry-on luggage and placed in a plastic bin for x-ray. Small devices such as e-readers (Nook, Kindle, etc.) and iPads can remain in your carry-on bag throughout the screening process. You should not have to take them out as you would a full-size laptop. Know ahead of time what you need to remove and what can stay in your bag.

Repack before you put shoes on

When you make it through to the other side, repack your belongings into your carry-on bags before you put your shoes on. It is a small thing, but saves time when you can gather your things first, then step aside and re-dress a few steps away from the conveyor belt. It frees up space for the passengers coming through.

In Kelowna, we see more people than ever before coming through our international airport. We at The Best Western Plus Kelowna Hotel & Suites hope you find these tips helpful as you plan your next airline travel. Hope to see you soon in Kelowna! If you need tips on what to bring in your carry-on luggage, and what to leave in your checked luggage, check out our article Check It or Carry It? Plane Travel Facts You May Not Know.


The award-winning BEST WESTERN PLUS Kelowna Hotel & Suites is known as a launch pad to the surrounding area’s 4 season outdoor playground in British Columbia, Canada. Winter sees world class skiing, and skating, while summer sun brings epic wine tours, golf, biking, and water sports. The Best Western is in the heart of beautiful Kelowna, BC and has 176 rooms and suites; plus conference center, mineral pool, spa and much more.



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