The checks and scans for illegal or dangerous items required at aiports for passengers and baggage.

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70
votes
7answers
9k views

How to convince airport security that I am not dangerous when having metallic parts in my body?

I had an operation some time ago and now I have small screws in my shoulder which will not be removed anymore. When I decided to fly for vacation, I supposed that these will may bring me into trouble ...
40
votes
7answers
9k views

Can growing a beard cause problems in crossing borders?

I just recently renewed my passport with a picture taken just after I shaved. I haven't shaved since (>3 weeks) and I kind of like it. I am even looking into how to maintain a beard, but that is a ...
34
votes
4answers
3k views

Can I take this on a plane?

I'm travelling to the UK in a couple of weeks to attend a wedding. While I'm away, I have a university assignment due, and I'm concerned that I might not be able to get it finished before I leave, ...
27
votes
6answers
6k views

What to do if drugs / a bomb are planted in your travel bag?

So the scene: You're flying from Bogota, Colombia to New York, USA. You arrive, pick up your bag from the carousel, and figure you'll stuff your netbook you used on the flight into your bag now ...
26
votes
2answers
9k views

What does this sticker on the back of my passport mean?

I am currently travelling in the USA and when checking in on the boarding flight to enter the country, the security personnel attached a small yellow-white sticker to my passport (see a somewhat ...
25
votes
7answers
4k views

Airport security: what if I carry an item with traces of explosive?

One day I was travelling from UK to Switzerland, the security officer at Gatwick airport check (with a kind of swab) all my electronic devices (mainly phone and camera chargers + cables) to see if it ...
23
votes
4answers
6k views

Name has “Mr” appended on reservation, airline will not reply

I recently booked tickets to travel by plane from the UK to Greece. The website I booked through (airfasttickets.co.uk) lists my name correctly, as "Mr Georgios [My surname]", exactly the same as in ...
23
votes
5answers
3k views

What items are forbidden to take when traveling to the US that would be OK in most other countries?

I am aware of a couple of items that are not allowed to take when traveling to a US destination (from abroad), even though they would be OK in most other countries: Kinder Eggs 6 or more "obscene ...
21
votes
3answers
14k views

What does “SSSS” on my boarding pass mean?

When I checked in for my American Airlines flight from Costa Rica back to the States, I noticed that my boarding pass had "SSSS" printed across the top left corner. Nobody else in my party had this ...
19
votes
5answers
16k views

Can you bring an empty water bottle with you on the plane?

I know you can't bring bottled water and such with you on the plane. However, is it safe to bring an empty bottle with you to fill up later? Or do you risk losing your possibly expensive/fancy/awesome ...
18
votes
2answers
4k views

Is the TSA Lock acceptable in European Airports?

I understand if you travelling in or to the US, you can lock your luggage using the TSA Luggage Lock. (Immigration is still able to open your luggage using their own special keys) How about Europe? ...
17
votes
4answers
4k views

Travelling with beach sand in carry-on

I'm making a trip back home (to the coast) shortly, and I would like to bring back sand from the beach with me as a keepsake or memento. It's just a short weekend trip, and I won't be checking any ...
17
votes
4answers
3k views

Can I drink stuff bought in duty-free shops onboard a plane?

I have to go into a trip while being slightly ill - doctors say I have to drink a lot. Can I buy water at a duty-free shop, bring it onboard and drink there?
17
votes
3answers
6k views

Are parachutes allowed on airplanes as cabin baggage?

On the Ryanair website, I came across an FAQ entry on whether parachutes are allowed on planes. (So I presume it must be asked frequently enough to be added to the FAQ page of a major low-cost ...
17
votes
3answers
12k views

Why do you need to take out your laptop from your bag during airport security checks?

Why do you need to take your laptop from your bag during airport security checks? Why can't they just x-ray check the whole bag together with the laptop?
16
votes
4answers
4k views

Is it OK to take a disposable safety razor on a plane?

I'm travelling soon with cabin luggage only and I was wondering if I can take a disposable safety razor with me? This page says it's OK, but it also says it's OK to take small scissors and I've ...
16
votes
3answers
3k views

Peacock feather a prohibited item?

I'm spending the summer in London and recently took a trip to Kew to visit the botanical gardens. While there I found a beautiful peacock feather that a friend of mine back in the US would love. ...
16
votes
2answers
2k views

Carry on cheese grater on domestic U.S. flight?

Will I be permitted to pack a cheese grater in my carry-on bag for a domestic U.S. flight, or will this be considered a "potential weapon" and prohibited?
16
votes
2answers
6k views

What happens if you miss a connecting flight?

What happens if you book tickets through an airline or travel agent, but on the travel date miss a connecting flight (either because the first flight was delayed, or because immigration/security took ...
16
votes
1answer
969 views

Can you freeze liquids to pass security checks?

Once I read a suggestion saying that frozen "liquids" are not subject to the 100 ml restriction of security checks in airports. I've found other references of this googling, but they all refer to TSA ...
14
votes
2answers
2k views

How can I not get electrically shocked when handling my laptop in an airport?

I traveled by plane for the first time in my life 3 months ago. It was 4 trips, which meant 4 hand luggage inspections. I have a huge problem: I am asked to remove my laptop and tablet from my bag ...
14
votes
2answers
2k views

US and Canada Border Crossing and Computer Privacy: What do I need to know?

I've read stories about border officials searching laptops when crossing the border in one direction or the other. Does this really happen, typically speaking? As a US citizen, can I be forced to ...
14
votes
1answer
248 views

Which organizations are/have been effective at lobbying against invasive airport security?

I've been selected for additional screening the last 5 times I've flown and I'm getting tired of it. Not flying is not an option. I want to donate money and time to a larger group that can represent ...
13
votes
2answers
39k views

Can I take both a laptop and a tablet in my carry-on bag when going to India?

I am planning to travel to India (COK airport, Kerala) from United States. I want to take my laptop as well as my tablet (iPad). Am I allowed to take both in my backpack with my documents related my ...
13
votes
4answers
369 views

How to dispose of a broken suitcase at an airport?

Recently I had to catch a flight from New Delhi to Frankfurt. On arriving at the airport, I realized that my suitcase was broken at the bottom near the wheels. Probably due to its rough handling ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

Correct reasons for opting out of millimetre wave scanners

Having travelled through SFO a few times, and each time been asked to go through a millimetre wave (or backscatter) scanner, and each time 'opted out' and gone for the search (in public), I'd like to ...
12
votes
3answers
26k views

Can I bring my desktop computer as check-in baggage on a flight?

I am moving from Malaysia to the US, and planning to bring my desktop computer with me. I plan to pack it in my checked-in luggage. Will the computer risk being damaged? Any precaution should I take ...
12
votes
1answer
801 views

Tent in hand luggage?

Can I carry a tent in hand luggage on a flight? Do poles/pegs present a threat? I mean, they could but they're going to be tightly packed and actually attempting to get them out would draw a lot of ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Can one carry an internal hard-drive in cabin-luggage?

I'm currently in the process of moving from France to Canada. I have plenty of computer equipment that I just put in boxes and that will be sent by naval transport. One thing I'm scared off though, ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

What's a good substitute for a pocket knife that can be carried on-board a plane?

I always used to pack a pocket knife in my checked luggage when travelling, but now that I'm travelling with carry-on bags only, security restrictions prevent me from bringing a pocket knife. Is ...
11
votes
1answer
390 views

Is mozzarella liquid affected by the no fluids policy on planes?

Recently I heard a story of a friend who was flying from Rome to Berlin. He tried to carry a big mozzarella cheese with him. Mozzarella cheese is generally layered in a milky liquid. At the security ...
10
votes
2answers
517 views

Are the TSA rules legally binding?

A user asked How do I minimize the chances of TSA agents confisticating liquids larger than 3 ounces? My question is - are the TSA rules legally binding or not? Whether or not you get charged if ...
10
votes
3answers
3k views

Camping stove on a plane?

Can I bring a camping stove (without fuel) on a (domestic or international) jet, either in checked baggage, carry-on, or some other means?
10
votes
1answer
224 views

Inspection of over-packed bags

On the TSA website, their "tips for packing your checked baggage" twice emphasizes that you shouldn't over-pack your bags: Avoid over packing your bag so that the screener will be able to easily ...
10
votes
1answer
7k views

How early can you go through airport security for an International flight?

I'm not sure if this is airline or airport-specific? (assuming airport) I know that if I have an early morning flight and show up the night before, I'm denied because the date on my ticket is for the ...
10
votes
1answer
123 views

Flying from Canada with art supplies

I always fly with just a carry-on and this time I'm thinking of taking some art supplies with me on my trip and I'm just wondering what the rules are. I'll be taking pastels, china ink and nibs, a few ...
10
votes
1answer
254 views

I stamped my passport before international departure, but I want to cancel now!

If I stamped my passport for an international flight as we usually do before international departures and then I changed my mind for any reason, for example a family emergency reason. What's the ...
9
votes
2answers
822 views

How can I make my boots less of a nuisance in the airport?

I wear boots for business wear due to some foot issues, but they can be a pain when going through airport security. Airport security often requires you to remove your shoes before you pass through ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

Can I take my liquid medication on a plane?

If I am taking a liquid medicine, but is over the ounces for a flight, will they still let me take it on a plane?
9
votes
2answers
3k views

Electronics in sealed box as carry-on luggage: issues at security?

We are going to a conference and we are taking a new ipad with us to give away but we don't want to box to be opened. Will they just run it through the scanner or do they have to open it?
9
votes
3answers
14k views

Can I take two laptops to India from United States? One bought in India and one in US

I will be landing at New Delhi airport. The worth of new laptop (Lenovo Yoga Idea Pad 13) is about $1000 and old one (Macbook Pro) is > 1 lakh INR. I want to leave the new laptop in India. I have a ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

Is a chest X-ray / report required to enter the UK?

I remember that two years ago, passport holders of non-EU nationalities were required to present a chest X-ray along with accompanying report on arrival at Heathrow airport. (And if you didn't have ...
8
votes
3answers
15k views

How do I prevent damage to electronic devices at airport security?

I have travelled with a laptop before with no problems (not recently), but for an upcoming trip I will, for the first time, be carrying a smartphone and a Kindle (not the Fire but the older e-ink ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

Duty-free liquids on a connecting flight in the US

I am going to the USA next week and want to bring some bottles of the good stuff as presents for my relatives living over there. My flight was cheap however it requires me to make a stop over. ...
8
votes
2answers
720 views

Exiting Vancouver airport during a flight connection with New Zealand passport

A friend on a NZ passport flies through Vancouver tomorrow, and has a few hours at the airport between international flights. Can he exit to the 'outside world', given he has a valid passport etc? ...
8
votes
1answer
344 views

Metal flasks with baby food in a plane

Are you allowed to bring a metal flask (0.5l) with (warm) baby food inside through the security on the airport? I am flying internationally from London Luton and returning from Warsaw, Poland.
8
votes
1answer
581 views

What US airports don't require removing CPAP for scanning at TSA?

I've gotten a number of different responses at airports. Atlanta requires removing a CPAP, but Reagan didn't. Any others know what airports require/don't require it? (And why its inconsistent)?
8
votes
2answers
3k views

Can you buy duty free at Kuala Lumpur for travel to Australia?

Currently, Australia has tough restrictions on liquids for both departing and arriving flights. These mean that for a flight to Australia, you will be re-screened before boarding the plane, with ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Why do airports sometimes detect traces of explosives in bags?

So there's a (usually spot check) inspection point at airports sometimes, and they do a check for traces of explosives/gunpowder residue. I've never had any problems, but a couple of friends have had ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

Can you enter the departures area without a boarding pass at London Heathrow airport?

My girlfriend is leaving the UK from Heathrow tomorrow. Is it possible for me to go through security with her so that we can be together until she goes to her departure gate?