Admittedly, Bryan and I stress about getting through security efficiently. We don’t like to delay other people, and we also don’t like to miss our flight. So we developed a system, a meticulous system, early on.
If you’re a laid-back sort, these tips will amuse you. If you hyperventilate at the thought of people in line behind you rolling their eyes, you’ll find this helpful.
The tips assume one baby, two adults, and three carry-ons. And away we go:
1. Get organized. Put liquids, gels, or powder (including baby food) in clear plastic bags. Wear shoes that slip on and off. Skip jewelry, empty your pockets into your bag, and affix your watch to a bag strap.
2. Toss contraband. Before queuing, ask yourself if you have any food or water that you’ve forgotten, and then throw it away. If you accidentally stow it in your bag, they’ll have to search your stuff, possibly send you through the air-puffing machine, call out the dogs, strip search you, and so on. It’s a pain.
3. Centralize IDs and tickets. Have one person keep IDs and tickets in an accessible pouch or wallet. That person shows ID for the group, and collects boarding passes after screening.
4. Get in the fast line. Lots of airports will send you into a quicker line if you have a baby with you. Approach the security agent with your stroller and ask, “Should we be in a different line with the baby?” Blink innocently.
5. Prep while you wait. Remove your shoes and laptops while you’re waiting. When you reach the magnetometer, un-stack as many trays as counter space allows.
6. Use lots of trays. Laptops need their own trays, as do your plastic bags full of food and toiletries.
7. Split up if possible. Ideally, one of you loads the conveyer belt while the other carries the baby through and packs up on the other side.
8. Load the conveyer belt judiciously. That means:
– Stroller or sling so the baby is situated right away and you have your hands free.
– Bag, then contents of that bag, rinse and repeat. That way you can zip one bag shut before tackling the next.
– Shoes go last. Either slip them back on, or go sit down elsewhere so you’re out of everyone’s way.
9. Exchange high fives. Damn, you’re good.
Like I said, meticulous. But awesome, no? If you have more ideas, please share them in the comments.