How to Speed Through Security Checkpoints Smoothly


Understanding and abiding by TSA’s 3-1-1 rule is an important step in ensuring your travels run smoothly. The rule is quite simple. Gels and liquids must be stored in containers of 3.4 ounces or less. These containers must be packaged in a single quart-size Zip-lock style bag.

Packing gels can sometimes be a little tricky and confusing. What, exactly, constitutes a gel? Well, According to TSA regulations, item’s such as jams and jellies, lotions, peanut butter and even spreadable cheese are all considered to be gels. These items must be stored in those little containers or will most likely be confiscated. Here is a list of gel-like substances that are not security checkpoint-approved.

Security Tips


Don't overpack your carry on luggage with so much stuff that you literally have to climb on top of it just to get it closed. Keep in mind that TSA agents can choose to open up your carry on bag for any reason.  You'll only waste time (as well as end up holding up other impatient traveler’s in the security line)  scampering around trying to gather and fit all of your overflowing  contents back into your baggage.


Having a well packed and organized carry-on travel bag will cause a lot less frustration and confusion when putting your luggage through the security X-ray scanner.  It is highly recommended by TSA that you pack all items in layers and designated spaces.  Luggage that is over stuffed with bundled up clothing, messy wires and miscellaneous items thrown about are more likely to get flagged and searched. For this reason, packing cubes are recommended as they help to keep your entire belongings neat, tidy and all in one place.


Keep your boarding pass, passport and ID together in an easy to reach place to show security when you reach the check point.

Don’t be that person that scrambles around frantically rummaging through stuff to fish out your camera, laptop and liquids the second you get to the X-ray scanner. Keep these items in an easy to access pocket, sleeve or at the very top of your carry on bag or travel backpack.


It’s important to dress comfortably while traveling but it can also save you a lot of time when having to pass through security check points. Keep your coat and pant pockets as empty as possible. Metal detectors will be set off by Items such as keys and spare change jingling around in your pockets. Remove any jewelry (as well as body piercings) before passing through the metal detector. Jewelry that sets off the alarm is cause for an unwanted invite of extra security screening.

If possible, travel without a belt that has any metal clasps as this will also cause the alarm to be set off. If you do wear a belt, remember to take it off while waiting in the checkpoint line. It is also required to remove your shoes during security screenings so try to wear comfortable shoes without laces. That way you can easily kick them off and put them back on quickly.

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