18

I had my travel shoes customised as they were slightly loose which made it tough to walk long distance. By customise I mean an extra layer added on inner side of shoe.

But now I am thinking if this will cause issue in security scanning as they ask us to remove shoes and scan them.

Will it be advisable to wear customised shoes?

  • 3
    Scanners are extremely precise and show different types of materials with different colours based on their nature. They should be able to detect quite easily if that additional layer is an issue or not. – jcaron Sep 30 '18 at 12:55
  • Having traveled from the US to and around Europe this summer, I'd say this is a very difficult question to answer. The US seems to be much picker about shoes than anywhere in Europe, but every airport I was in seemed to have their own policies and procedures in regards to what needs to be removed and how its inspected. Adding your travel locations may help get you a more specific answer. – FreeMan Oct 1 '18 at 14:52
31

If the extra layer is material that is usually used in making shoes, there will be no problems at all.
Even when they used unusual materials, like metal, the scanning of the shoe will show what is done and they can see nothing is wrong with it.

Last year I wore my work boots with reinforced toecaps and the airport security told me not even to bother taking them off. I still did, as I prefer not to make the metal detector beep on me.
The scan people did not want to double check. They did double check some items in an other bag, so they were active. They were able to see through the boots well enough.

  • 18
    Indeed.Trust me, the people running the scanners have seen shoes with all manner of inserts before. – Jamie Hanrahan Sep 30 '18 at 16:27
15

At some point in the past, gel insoles were banned if you were flying to/from/within the USA. See gel insoles (PDF). I decided to askTSA directly because user david-k found several references that said they were find to wear.

I messaged TSA and got this response:

screenshot of message from T S A gel insoles are allowed

Gel insoles are allowed, but as is usual, if you are in standard security line (not precheck for instance), you'll have to remove your shoes and put them through the scanner.

  • I don't see how it answers the question though – pipe Oct 1 '18 at 14:38
  • 2
    OP hasn't specified the material of the extra layer. It's probably doesn't contain gel but I often add them to my shoes. – mkennedy Oct 1 '18 at 14:42
  • 3
    It appears that this advice is outdated and gel inserts are now allowed: "Gel shoe inserts were banned for some time, but the TSA changed its policy and now allows inserts to be worn in airports and airplanes." Source1 Source2 – David K Oct 1 '18 at 14:59
  • @DavidK when were they prohibited? I have been wearing gel insoles for probably 10 years or so without anyone ever saying anything about them. – phoog Oct 2 '18 at 6:42
  • @phoog I'm not sure, but the linked document mkennedy provided clearly shows they were banned at some point. I would guess that it started around the same time they started banning gels and liquids in general. – David K Oct 2 '18 at 12:13

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