Asked To Pack Carry-On Luggage Neatly
There's now another
reason for travelers to pack neatly when taking an
airline trip. In addition to making sure your clothes aren't
(overly) wrinkled at your destination... you'll also be making a
TSA screener's job a bit easier.
On Monday, the Transportation Security Administration urged
passengers to follow their mothers' advice, as it were, and pack
items in their carry-on luggage neatly, and in layers.
Doing so will cut down on time screeners have to spend rifling
through suitcases, the agency says -- cutting down on time spent
searching carry-ons, and hopefully keeping lines at checkpoints
moving more quickly than some glaciers.
By packing in layers, according to TSA spokeswoman Ellen Howe,
passengers will also cut down on the chances their bag will be
pulled aside for additional searches.
"If you eliminate clutter, it helps us get a cleaner look at the
contents of a bag" on checkpoint X-ray machines, Howe told USA
The program -- dubbed "SimpliFLY" by the agency -- is aimed
towards persons who usually don't fly commercially, but are doing
so for the holiday season... and who aren't familiar with the
litany of regulations and security procedures commonplace at
Dan Castelveter, spokesman for the Air Transport Association,
did not give the TSA's efforts a ringing endorsement... but says
every little bit helps.
"Whether or not the (TSA) campaign is effective, the effort is
certainly welcome because, with 27 million-plus people scheduled to
fly over Thanksgiving, every effort to speed up the security
checkpoint will help," said Castelveter.
That mixed sentiment was echoed by Kevin Mitchell, chairman of
the Business Travel Coalition. Mitchell applauded the TSA's efforts
to inform passengers... but added he wasn't "real optimistic" it
will help speed up security lines.
"The message is a pretty sophisticated one, and it's a lot for
the average person who is traveling for the first time in months to
remember," Mitchell said.
One must wonder what part of "pack neatly" Mitchell doesn't feel
holiday travelers will understand.
On second thought... we see his point.