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Transportation Security Administration

Passing the Holiday Travel Test

Thursday, December 19, 2019
Holiday traveler in winter clothes with suitcase

As we announced yesterday, this Holiday Travel season is projected to bring a record-breaking number of travelers to airports across America. With that in mind, we offer you some tips to help you ease some of the stress for your holiday travels.

Ready to wrap?

Hold off wrapping your gifts until you reach your destination. Any item that requires additional inspection, such as larger electronics, could require that the item be unwrapped. Consider bringing the wrapping paper and ribbon along with you and wrapping the items when you reach your destination. Gift bags can also make any additional screening a breeze.

Here for the grub?

Whether its bringing a pie to dinner or taking home leftovers, please be aware that food items must follow the 3-1-1 liquids rule. That means creamy or spreadable foods, like gravy and cranberry sauce, are limited to 3.4 ounce containers (100 milliliters), placed in one quart-sized, zip-top bag. Solid foods are allowed through the security checkpoint in your carry-on bag without limits or packing requirements. That includes meats, breads, pies, fruits and veggies.

Wine not?

Your favorite bottle(s) of wine, beer, or spirits must be packed in you checked bags for your flight. You may pack as many alcoholic beverages that you can fit in your suitcase as long as they contain less than 24% alcohol. Stronger spirited beverages (with an alcohol content of 24-70%) are limited to a total of 5 liters and they must be in their original, unopened packaging. Bladeless corkscrews are allowed through the checkpoint, but the ones with the little blade must be placed in checked bags.

Got TSA Pre✓®?

TSA Pre✓® allows eligible travelers to receive expedited screening so there is no need to remove shoes, laptops, liquids, belts and light jackets. Last month, 93% of TSA Pre✓® passengers waited less than 5 minutes at the security checkpoints nationwide. TSA Pre✓® is offered at more than 200 airports, on 73 airlines, and membership is $85 for 5 years. That’s $17 a year! If you aren’t already a member, apply now and be ready for your next holiday trip!

Need a hand?

Travelers with disabilities, medical conditions and other special circumstances may call the TSA Cares helpline toll free at 855-787-2227 with any questions about screening policies, procedures and to find out what to expect at the security checkpoint. TSA Cares can also arrange for special assistance at the checkpoint. You are also able to request a Passenger Support Specialist or a Supervisor at the checkpoint for on-the-spot assistance.

Looking for more information?

The MyTSA app provides passengers with 24/7 access to the most frequently requested airport security information on any mobile device. Check delay information and current weather conditions at your favorite airports nationwide. You can also use the “What Can I Bring?” tool to know if an item can be packed in your carry-on or checked bag before arriving at the airport.

If you have any other TSA-related travel questions, please send them to our AskTSA Customer Care Team on Twitter and Facebook. Our helpful staff is available weekdays from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. and weekends/holidays from 9 a.m. to 7p.m. ET, even on holidays!