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COVID-19 TSA Updates

May 22, 2020

The Transportation Security Administration is implementing changes to its security screening process amid the COVID-19 pandemic. TSA has already started implementing the changes, but will continue to implement them at airports nationwide by mid-June. Travelers should expect the following:

Boarding passes: Travelers should place their boarding pass on the boarding pass reader themselves as opposed to handing it to a TSA officer. Then, travelers are expected to hold up their pass so an officer can inspect it without needing to touch it.

Food: Place carry-on food items into a clear plastic bag and place that bag into a bin for X-ray screenings.

Social distancing: Keep an increased distance between people "without compromising security." Visual reminders about appropriate spacing are also placed on checkpoint floors.

Face masks: TSA officers are using face masks, and it is required that travelers do so, too.

Hand sanitizer: TSA is allowing one liquid hand sanitizer container up to 12 ounces per passenger in carry-on bags until further notice. Passengers can expect that these containers larger than the standard allowance of 3.4 ounces of liquids permitted through a checkpoint will need to be screened separately.


Abide by the rules: Making sure you "pack smart" (no prohibited items in your bag, etc.) helps reduce time in the screening process. If a prohibited item is found, travelers may be directed outside of security to remove the item before being re-screened in order to reduce the number of TSA officers needing to touch the contents of someone's carry-on.

Safety measures that are already put in place include reduced security lane usage, some TSA officers wearing eye protection, TSA officers changing gloves after each pat-down, plastic shielding at many podiums and counters and routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces.

Neither the TSA nor the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have indicated any plans to begin checking temperature or when/if it might start, but some airlines are enforcing temperature checks.

Please visit the link STM has created for clients to easily access information on procedures regarding safety measures for air, hotel and ground transportation. More

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