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What to Expect If a Passenger Has Difficulty Waiting in Line

Travelers with Disabilities and Medical Conditions

Many airports have lanes specifically for use by passengers with disabilities and medical conditions or those traveling with young children. While passengers still may need to wait in line if they use these lanes, the lines often are much shorter and the wait time generally is less. A passenger can ask to be directed to one of these lanes when checking in with his or her airline or once he or she has reached the general line used by passengers. Use of these lanes is not limited to passengers who have physical disabilities. Passengers with cognitive and psychological disabilities that make it difficult to wait in line are also allowed to use these lanes.

If the airport or checkpoint does not have a lane set aside for passengers with disabilities or families, or a passenger does not want to use that lane, any eligible passenger who has difficulty standing can request to move to the front of any line and be accompanied by his or her traveling companions. This request can be made for any disability or medical condition that makes waiting and standing difficult, including cognitive and psychological conditions. However, not every security line area is managed by TSA personnel and the airport authority, or the airlines, may be overseeing the line.

A passenger should inform the personnel overseeing the line that he or she may have difficulty standing or waiting in line due to a disability or medical condition before entering the line. Passengers can use TSA’s Notification Card to communicate discreetly with security officers. However, showing this card or other medical documentation will not exempt a passenger from additional screening.


Please click on the links below for specific information about screening for passengers with disabilities or medical conditions:

Latest revision: 24 April 2014