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maxiesmom
03-14-2012, 11:38 AM
I just wanted to post what was a pretty positive experience with the TSA, and the screenings, we just experience for our trip last week.

Departing from our home airport (Grand Rapids, MI) the TSA agent who checks your ID was very nice. So much so that I can't help but wonder if they are doing a bit of retraining. My 20 yr old nephew was the only male traveling with us, and the agent told him that even though he was hanging onto a pink tote bag (my 11 yr old nieces's bag) that it was ladies first. I've not had any really horrible experiences with the TSA agents, but they usually don't joke with you.

After that the next agent said that as we had a younger child with us, we didn't have to go thru the backscatter machine, we just went thru the WTMD.:cool1: Bonus! Though when my other niece and her dad flew down the following night all they had opened was the backscatter machine. She said it wasn't a big deal, she just had to hold her hands over her head. Though her dad was called out for still having his wallet in his back pocket.:headache:

Flying home, the agents in Orlando were there normal selves. To the point, and polite. The did divide us up into 2 groups, so if you are flying soon be aware that your family may be split up going thru security. And for some strange reason a couple of us ended up with our shoes shooting of of the belt.

All in all it was a painless experience, with not a crabby agent in sight.:thumbsup2

goofy4tink
03-14-2012, 11:51 AM
I have to say that in the vast majority of my experiences, I have had good and almost pleasant run ins with the TSA. Only one time was it less than stellar...and that time I had my ds's coin collection in my carryon bag, for obvious reasons. Well, when that bag went through the scanner, the TSA lady jumped to grab it before I could get there. She asked what was in there...told her it was a coin collection and stepped up to open the bag for her. 'Step back, away from the bag mam!!' was her response. Yikes....I was really taken aback. But, I didn't go too far from that bag...I wanted to see her hands at all times. My ds had some pretty nice coins in there, didn't want any to go 'missing', before I even made it out of Boston!!! She did open the bag, saw what was in there, shrugged and said 'there ya go' and walked away. No niceities at all.

But, almost every other time the workers have been very pleasant. There was the TSA guy at Worcester, when flying DirectAir (guess that won't be happening again)...he had some questions about what was in my carryon bag..must have looked strange coming through the scanner. It was my fish extenders bags for our cruise. He asked if there was one for him...said he really liked candy!!!! Too funny.
Or the time I had my dd's 13th birthday cake with us...the GF had boxed it up very nicely and it fit perfectly into my carryon bag...no way was I leaving a $135 cake that had 1/4 of it eaten, behind!!!! That bag went back and forth through the scanner about 8 times!!! The TSA workers were really baffled. They finally asked if I had a wheel of cheese in my bag!!! Told them what it was and they just howled with laughter.

Or the TSA workers that were so amused at my carrying my ds's cat through security. When I asked if the cat 'had' to come out of the carrier, they said, well...the cat wasn't going through that scanner..didn't want to see what she looked like later on!!! No, I meant carry the carrier with me, through the same scanner the cat was going through to begin with..but in the carrier. Nope....but they did tell me they would help me catch the cat if she got out of my arms!!!!!

Nope, I figure that if I am pleasant and upbeat, I will be responded to in a like manner!! If I go in looking for an argument, I'll probably find one.

Zerosinthecloset
03-14-2012, 02:19 PM
On our last trip as I was pushing our carryons through the scanner, the TSA lady thanked me for having my netbook and Kindle out and in a bin by themselves. She said people have the lamest excuses why they shouldn't have to take theirs out,...vis-a-vis...previous discussions on these boards. I said if she ever saw anyone with a lime green mickey head on ther carryon just say, "in the bin, or body cavity search". She thought that was a good idea.

SDSorority
03-14-2012, 03:01 PM
We had a fine experience at CMH last week (though we normally do fine there). At LAS on Monday DH and I 'opted out' and both got pat down. Both of our TSO's were fine- my lady was really nice. Of course... then there's the debate about whether or not it should have been done in the first place... but aside from that, the experience for me wasn't bad.

lost*in*cyberspace
03-14-2012, 04:21 PM
On our last trip as I was pushing our carryons through the scanner, the TSA lady thanked me for having my netbook and Kindle out and in a bin by themselves. She said people have the lamest excuses why they shouldn't have to take theirs out

So following TSA's own written policy, which is that nothing smaller than a laptop has to be removed from a carry-on, is lame :confused3. Another TSA employee unfamiliar with policy.

A Kindle and netbook may stay in a carry-on. I've posted a link to the policy here many times already.

bumbershoot
03-14-2012, 06:16 PM
On our last trip as I was pushing our carryons through the scanner, the TSA lady thanked me for having my netbook and Kindle out and in a bin by themselves. She said people have the lamest excuses why they shouldn't have to take theirs out,...vis-a-vis...previous discussions on these boards.

She might be hearing excuses because you don't have to take out your Kindle (and your netbook per the PP, but I don't know anything about that).


DH takes his out, but that's b/c he's a tester for them and routinely carries *many* of them along with all the cords, etc, but I never have and have never needed to make an excuse.



On our last trip home from MCO, it was a long family line (where we were sent, ugh) with all sorts of newbies, and a poor hapless TSA guy was trying to restock the bins. I didn't think anything of it, but let him go on in and stock and when he apologized I said he didn't have to, that the bins needed to be restocked somehow, and we weren't in a hurry (we once should have missed a flight, and we now get there AGES in advance).

DS and I got separated from DH by some newbies cutting in front of DH while he unloaded onto the conveyor belt, but the agents recognized that he was with us. When DS and I were done we dragged our bins to the very end of the line and as I emptied each bin I stacked it. I had a problem with the last bin and was making a mess of the stack, and the same guy came by and helped, and I thanked him for his assistance, shamefacedly saying something about how I was trying ot help but was making it worse.

I guess DH talked with the bin restocker after he got through behind the line-cutting newbies, and the restocker said that we were *the nicest people* he has EVER seen going through security.

While that was sweet and nice to hear, the reality of that makes me want to cry for him. Our simple patience and not blocking him from doing his job made us the nicest people he had met there? What does that say about everyone else?

dburg30
03-14-2012, 06:32 PM
Yea, out of CMH, RDU, and MCO the 3 I usually fly to /out of, have never had a 'rude' TSA agent. But I never put myself in a position to have an issue :). I make sure I'm there in plenty of time, so dont have to rush. I wear 'travel friendly clothing' ie: no belts nothing weird, just jeans / shorts and t-shirt, tennis shoes. Put keys in my carry on, only have my wedding ring on and wallet in pocket.

Like goofy4tink ONE time I had them want to look in my bag, was full of camera crap, usb cables etc etc.. think it had shifted and looked pretty weird. I also started to help them open it, and they firmly told me to not touch it :).

I always say hello, ask them how they are doing, and say thanks when I'm done. I see no reason at all to be rude to them. But again, I also say thanks to the flight attendants, bus drivers, ticket takers, basically anyone I interact with :). Amazing how just being kind to people usually gets pleasantries back :)

lost*in*cyberspace
03-14-2012, 07:28 PM
Like goofy4tink ONE time I had them want to look in my bag, was full of camera crap, usb cables etc etc.. think it had shifted and looked pretty weird. I also started to help them open it, and they firmly told me to not touch it :).

I always say hello, ask them how they are doing, and say thanks when I'm done. I see no reason at all to be rude to them. But again, I also say thanks to the flight attendants, bus drivers, ticket takers, basically anyone I interact with :). Amazing how just being kind to people usually gets pleasantries back :)

Yes, if TSA wants to look in your bag, they will open it and take things out themselves. You are not supposed to touch anything.

I agree that there is no point in being rude to TSA employees or arguing with them. If they ask you to do something which you are not supposed to have to do, such as taking an iPad out of your bag, just do it. Arguing is pointless and holds up the line.

Every once in a while someone starts a thread here bragging about being difficult with the TSA. I don't get it.

lylone
03-15-2012, 08:00 AM
When going through security we always have our ducks in a row to make the whole process go smoother. Unless it is early in the morning, I am very upbeat and try to joke around with the TSA folks. I asked the "gatekeeper" guy who makes you wait after you have been scanned how he likes his job. I got a roll of the eyes and agreed with him how I could see that the job could be dull sometimes. He looked at me funny, but then we both cracked a smile.
I figured I brightened his morning.
I am quite an outgoing goofy soul and try to use my gift on a grumpy person daily. Some days it is very rewarding... other days I get weird looks.

LSchrow
03-15-2012, 08:40 AM
when (now bald/shaved) DH hands his DL to the TSA, they usually do a few back and forth looks between him and the old photo. he then puts his finger over where the hair is in the photo, and gives a huge grin.
very rarely does one not laugh :)

the only really bad experience we have had was when DS was about 10, and they searched his carry-on. he was nervous, and i kiddingly told him it was probably his gum (he insisted on bringing multiple packs of wrigley's).
the female agent suddenly started loudly yelling at me and continued for quite a while - i tried calming her down, even stating that most members of my family are with the FAA, but she just kept her tirade going:headache:.
after about 15 minutes, she reluctantly let us go. as we were leaving the area, DH whispered to me, "do you know she thought you said gun?" i really had no idea......:blush:
now, i run ever word over in my mind before i say in front of a TSA.

pk1959
03-15-2012, 09:37 AM
So following TSA's own written policy, which is that nothing smaller than a laptop has to be removed from a carry-on, is lame :confused3. Another TSA employee unfamiliar with policy.

A Kindle and netbook may stay in a carry-on. I've posted a link to the policy here many times already.

This is something that is definitely not followed by the TSA screeners that we have encountered. We have taken 3 roundtrip flights since Jan 13th, so have been through security 6 times and carry a 10.1" netbook and they have wanted it out of our laptop case EVERY SINGLE TIME :confused3

ccgirl
03-15-2012, 10:00 AM
This is something that is definitely not followed by the TSA screeners that we have encountered. We have taken 3 roundtrip flights since Jan 13th, so have been through security 6 times and carry a 10.1" netbook and they have wanted it out of our laptop case EVERY SINGLE TIME :confused3

I would think that would be about that same size as a laptop and need to be removed. The kindle is much smaller. I have never had to take out a kindle or DS game console.

I have to say that in the vast majority of my experiences, I have had good and almost pleasant run ins with the TSA. Only one time was it less than stellar...and that time I had my ds's coin collection in my carryon bag, for obvious reasons. Well, when that bag went through the scanner, the TSA lady jumped to grab it before I could get there. She asked what was in there...told her it was a coin collection and stepped up to open the bag for her. 'Step back, away from the bag mam!!' was her response. Yikes....I was really taken aback. But, I didn't go too far from that bag...I wanted to see her hands at all times. My ds had some pretty nice coins in there, didn't want any to go 'missing', before I even made it out of Boston!!! She did open the bag, saw what was in there, shrugged and said 'there ya go' and walked away. No niceities at all.

But, almost every other time the workers have been very pleasant. There was the TSA guy at Worcester, when flying DirectAir (guess that won't be happening again)...he had some questions about what was in my carryon bag..must have looked strange coming through the scanner. It was my fish extenders bags for our cruise. He asked if there was one for him...said he really liked candy!!!! Too funny.
Or the time I had my dd's 13th birthday cake with us...the GF had boxed it up very nicely and it fit perfectly into my carryon bag...no way was I leaving a $135 cake that had 1/4 of it eaten, behind!!!! That bag went back and forth through the scanner about 8 times!!! The TSA workers were really baffled. They finally asked if I had a wheel of cheese in my bag!!! Told them what it was and they just howled with laughter.

Or the TSA workers that were so amused at my carrying my ds's cat through security. When I asked if the cat 'had' to come out of the carrier, they said, well...the cat wasn't going through that scanner..didn't want to see what she looked like later on!!! No, I meant carry the carrier with me, through the same scanner the cat was going through to begin with..but in the carrier. Nope....but they did tell me they would help me catch the cat if she got out of my arms!!!!!

Nope, I figure that if I am pleasant and upbeat, I will be responded to in a like manner!! If I go in looking for an argument, I'll probably find one.

Bolded mine. I think that is the key. If you go into it in attack mode, they are more than likely to go on the defensive. I fly fairly often with my children and have never had a "problem". The to the point, no fuss TSA agents from MCO but I can't really fault them for that. BOS was my, surprisingly, best experience. We were flying AirTran and got to the airport in plenty of time. We had to bring my son's nebulizer with us. I declared it and they said no problem that they were sorry we had to travel with that. They were nice and talked to the kids but, I had already prepared them for what would happen beforehand. Our sweatshirts were already packed in our carryon before we got in line. They said they could not believe how my DS3 knew exactly what to do and followed instructions so well. I'm just glad they don't have to take their shoes off anymore. Skeeves me out!

PVD has always been easy breezy.

CPT Tripss
03-15-2012, 11:05 AM
Yes, if TSA wants to look in your bag, they will open it and take things out themselves. You are not supposed to touch anything.

I agree that there is no point in being rude to TSA employees or arguing with them. If they ask you to do something which you are not supposed to have to do, such as taking an iPad out of your bag, just do it. Arguing is pointless and holds up the line.
Every once in a while someone starts a thread here bragging about being difficult with the TSA. I don't get it.

Read Niemoeller, you might find a point.

goofy4tink
03-15-2012, 01:33 PM
I would think that would be about that same size as a laptop and need to be removed. The kindle is much smaller. I have never had to take out a kindle or DS game console.



Bolded mine. I think that is the key. If you go into it in attack mode, they are more than likely to go on the defensive. I fly fairly often with my children and have never had a "problem". The to the point, no fuss TSA agents from MCO but I can't really fault them for that. BOS was my, surprisingly, best experience. We were flying AirTran and got to the airport in plenty of time. We had to bring my son's nebulizer with us. I declared it and they said no problem that they were sorry we had to travel with that. They were nice and talked to the kids but, I had already prepared them for what would happen beforehand. Our sweatshirts were already packed in our carryon before we got in line. They said they could not believe how my DS3 knew exactly what to do and followed instructions so well. I'm just glad they don't have to take their shoes off anymore. Skeeves me out!

PVD has always been easy breezy.
Did you fly Airtran out of Terminal E??? Just used it last month..OMG, it was wonderful. Almost enough to have me flying SW out of Logan vs Green!!! Almost.

aubriee
03-17-2012, 04:20 AM
I fly DFW to MCO several times a year and have pretty much never had a problem with the TSA agents. Dallas has some really grumpy ones though, especially early in the morning. However, I always have my 3-1-1- bag ready, shoes off, don't wear anything that could set the scanner off, and other than giving them a pleasant nod and saying hi, keep my mouth shut. My husband does not fly as much as I do and has a very friendly outgoing personality. This man never meets a stranger and is always laughing and chatting people up. Seeing how the DFW TSA agents have responded to other people who try to talk to them, I have warned him not to say anything to the DFW TSA agents other than 'hello' and 'thank you'. Twice he didn't listen and said something like, "Hi, how are you doing? Having a nice day?'" Both times he got jumped out and got a response like, "Put your bag up there and shut up, it's not my job to be nice to you or talk to you".:rotfl::rolleyes1 Now he's finally learned to smile pleasantly and keep his mouth shut.:rotfl: We've never had a problem with the Orlando TSA agents and have always found them very pleasant.

The only time I've had a problem with one was May 2010 when I was doing carry on only. I had a quart ziplock bag of bath salts in my carry on. For some reason they just kept running my bag back and forth and finally asked if it was mine and said they had to search it. The TSA agent opened the bag of bath salts, smelled them, ran a few through his gloved fingers, and finally ran the cloth covered wand around in them. I laughed and told him they were only bath salts and had the label on them saying they were. He glared at me, told me to shut up and let him do his job. He then paged a supervisor over, who took one look at them, gave him a disgusted look, said they were fine, and to let me go. He gave me another glare and said he was going to let them go this time, but I'd better not try to sneak them through again. lol What was really funny is that when I got to WDW and unpacked, I noticed that in a small make up bag right under those bath salts I had accidentally left a mini mascara, two mini lip gloss tubes, and a travel size bottle of cleansing oil. That goofy TSA agent was so busy examining my bath salts which were legal that he missed several small items in my makeup bag that weren't.lol

goofy4tink
03-17-2012, 09:44 AM
Lack of consistency is my big issue with the TSA. I always start to take my netbook and Nook out of their bags...and I get told that they can stay just as they are. But, if I leave them in their carrying bags, inside my carryon?? I get told they have to come out and go into a different bin, out of the cases. Drives me nuts.
I realize they have a job to do. And I also realize that is probably isn't always the most fun you can have standing there all day, doing that job. BUT...if there is a rule, there is a rule. The rule shouldn't be one way in Boston and another way in Orlando. Travelers need to know what is expected of them.

When we 'think' we know what is wanted, we try to go along with that. But, when we are then old, crossly, that no, the netbook has to come out, and do it now!!...well, I'm sorry but my good naturedness goes only so far. If I get a nasty enough attitude, I am going to go looking for a supervisor, and nicely explain my issue. There is no need for nastiness when dealing with travelers. Is it always easy? No, it isn't. I worked retail and in CS for many years. And sometimes the general public is so incredibly stupid that it's hard to understand when we just don't die out as a race. But, you deal with the stupidity nicely and pleasantly. Then, you can vent later, out of sight of the public.

maxiesmom
03-17-2012, 02:29 PM
Lack of consistency is my big issue with the TSA. I always start to take my netbook and Nook out of their bags...and I get told that they can stay just as they are. But, if I leave them in their carrying bags, inside my carryon?? I get told they have to come out and go into a different bin, out of the cases. Drives me nuts.
I realize they have a job to do. And I also realize that is probably isn't always the most fun you can have standing there all day, doing that job. BUT...if there is a rule, there is a rule. The rule shouldn't be one way in Boston and another way in Orlando. Travelers need to know what is expected of them.



For me, it is the shoes that cause problems. One airport wants them in a bin. At the next airport they get cross with me for putting them in a bin, and snatch them out! Makes me a bit crazy.

disfan07
03-18-2012, 01:30 AM
I've only ever had 1 problem with a TSA agent....but they called the supervisor and suddenly the problem was resolved. The TSA agent was a real pain in the a**. But that was at Dulles airport and I have found that they have some of the least friendly ones there. But IMO, that airports security is kind of a disaster to begin with.

Otherwise, no problems. The majority have been very kind and helpful. I am polite and they are polite back. I organize my carry ons to make it easy for everyone. I take out my laptop, and meds. I put my nebulizer in a separate bin (still in its bag). I make sure everything is easy to access just in case. I don't get attitude with them and they don't have an attitude with me.

I travel with a laptop bag (laptop, cords, movies), a medical bag (nebulizer, and medications---including 8 lotions, epipens and 3 liquid medications) and another carry on(food, movies, spare clothes, etc). So I travel with A LOT of things and i have still NEVER encountered some of the things I've read on these boards.

I have never heard complaints about the TSA In real life like I do on these boards. I think there are some select people on these boards who have no idea how to be polite.

disneymarie
03-18-2012, 02:58 AM
We flew Air tran from Harrisburg to MCO and back again. THe under 12 yrs old did not have to remove shoes. Harrisburg had the generic scanner with hands up. It was better then the pat down, but I had my cell phone on. DD 16 had barrets in her hair.
Both legs we put the electronics in their bags open in the bin. No issues.

On the way back, MCO, Air tran, no scatter thing, metal detector only. But dgs Thomas the tank carry on got pulled,
We had forgotten and packed his bubble making Disney gun in the bag....:confused3

disneymarie
03-18-2012, 03:02 AM
duplicate post sorry