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TSA Urges Travelers To Follow These 7 Tips For Smoother Summer Travel

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The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is ready for a busy summer travel season. Are you?

The TSA is expecting a big surge in travelers at airports in the coming months, which can become chaotic pretty quickly.

crowded airport security lines

They have taken the necessary steps to make going through security checkpoints run smoothly without compromising safety.

However, it's up to the travelers to make some preparations too. Nobody wants to be the person that slows everyone else down during an already stressful process.

“TSA is ready to handle this summer’s anticipated increase in travel. Our staffing levels are better and this is largely due to better pay for all TSA employees which starts on July 1st,” said TSA Administrator David Pekoske.

The TSA just announced these 7 tips to make for a smoother airport experience this summer:

PreCheck Ticketholders Need To Include The Right Information

When you arrive at the security checkpoint, there are most likely at least 2 different lines. The first being for general boarding passes and the other for TSA PreCheck.

tsa precheck sign at airport

Many enroll in PreCheck to decrease wait time. Last April, 94% of PreCheck passengers had less than a 5-minute wait through security lines.

There are now over 15 million PreCheck members, but just because they can skip some safety procedures doesn't mean they can be careless in providing information.

Those with PreCheck boarding passes must verify their Known Traveler Number (KTN). Without it, you will slow the PreCheck line, and it will be more of a headache than it's worth.

Empty Your Bag Before Packing

When travelers know exactly what's being carried, they are less likely to be stopped for a secondary search, especially if there is any chance at all of possessing a weapon.

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man packing his bag

It's best to start with an empty bag when packing at home so there are no surprises at the airport.

TSA's website provides a What Can I Bring? page for travelers. Travelers should look over this list before packing and double-check their possessions before walking through security checkpoints.

Don't Rush

The TSA says it's important not to rush and to plan ahead as much as possible. By giving yourself extra time to return a rental car or check in an extra bag, these small things add up quickly.

When arriving at the security lines, it's best to remove items from your pockets before reaching the end of the line to save time as well.

couple with checked baggage at airport

Listen to TSA Agents and Be Aware Of The Latest Technology

For someone who hasn't flown in a long stretch of time, it can be intimidating to go through the TSA checkpoints.

It's best to research ahead of time to know what you are signing up for. As much as TSA agents would love to help, it's a fast-paced environment, so they can come across as a bit brutish at times.

It's best to follow their verbal instructions and to know ahead of time the types of technology that are typically used to keep us all safe.

traveler being searched by tsa

Be Respectful To All Airline Employees

Airport crowds can be tough to navigate and cause extreme frustration. It's important to have self-control and remain patient, as lashing out at any airport employee will not have any positive results for you and other travelers.

Police are on patrol frequently at every airport and will be called upon to handle unruly passengers if the situation gets out of hand. Assaulting a TSA Officer is a federal crime and comes with stiff penalties.

Bring An Acceptable Form Of Identification

All adults 18 years our older must have an acceptable form of identification to board their flight. Without it, you're not going anywhere in the air.

verifying identification at airport

Starting in May 2025, all state-provided IDs or licenses will need to be compliant with REAL ID.

Feel Free To Contact TSA With Questions, Concerns, Complaints, Or Other Assistance

There are many ways to get in touch with TSA, including on Twitter and Facebook. Operating hours are from 8am-6pm ET by simply sending a message to @AskTSA or texting 272282.

If there are customer service-related issues, affected travelers can call the TSA Contact Center (TCC) at (866) 289-9673

TSA Cares handles all travelers who need special assistance. They can be reached at (855) 787-2227, where they can schedule assistive services with at least 72 hours' notice.

tsa officer with special needs passenger

Both TSA Cares and the TCC are available on weekdays from 8am-11pm ET, and weekends/holidays from 9am-8pm ET.

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