How to Not Annoy Airport Security

With the holiday travel season coming upon us, we at
Of Cabbages and Kings want to make your trips to visit family and friends as easy as possible. And--

No, we're not going to send you Valium to drop into the family punch bowl at Thanksgiving...

no, we are not creating an Private Impersonations business, where someone poses as an exact likeness of you for holiday gatherings so that way you, meanwhile, can go off to sunny Puerto Vallarta, to enjoy surf, sand and coladas...

Nope, the way we plan to make your life easier, is by giving you some
helpful tips for getting through airport security without annoying them-- and molesting you.

As you know, tighter security restrictions at airports all over the world have made us safer, more secure, and less likely to put plastic explosives in our shoes.

But with those restrictions, come new processes. And by knowing and understanding them in advance,
you can help keep the line moving...

Get to your destination quickly and safely...

And avoid any embarrassing body cavity searches by large men with small flashlights.

Based on my own personal airport travel experiences, I offer you the following tips:

When dressing to travel by air, it's helpful to think of yourself as a mental patient. How would someone in a dangerous psych ward have to dress? That's right-- no sharp objects, no metal, no sense of personal style. To be more specific...

Don't wear a belt. Belts can beep in the metal detectors and thus require you to be patted down and scanned by large men named Mongo. It is better to lose your trousers and moon citizens of 19 different countries, than it is to meet Mongo, who is in a bad mood because his own family is sitting down without him to a giant turkey feast as we speak, and his obnoxious cousin Ray is getting the drumstick. As alternatives to your traditional wardrobe, consider wearing:
  • Sweats
  • Draw string lounge pants
  • Homer Simpson pajamas
All of these are appropriate airport wear, and will only cause people to giggle and point once you reach your final destination. In fact, just roll out of bed and go to the airport. Jeans and dress slacks have rivets and may need belts. So remember: they = Mongo

Don't wear a metal watch. You think you need to know the time regularly in order to make your connections. But this is really just a rumor. The metal wristwatch is the single largest reason metal detectors beep and passengers are taken into small backrooms by people dressed in black suits and sunglasses and then seen again 12 days later bruised and amnesic. So, does being able to track every little iddy bitty moment of your trip seem that necessary now? Somehow I bet it doesn't.

Forgo jewelry and metal hair accessories. "It's gold," you say, indicating your bling, and insisting the detectors will ignore it. Or "I need to see where I'm going," you reply, touching the barrette securing the bangs from your eyes.

Ah, but a single forgotten barrette going through security can mean the difference between making your destination, or spending quality time in a small glass booth in the airport. Sure, people may admire your name written in giant fourteen carat gold lettering under normal circumstances. But no one will be noticing it when you're pressing your nose against that glass booth , steaming up the window with your screams, wondering when someone, anyone, is going to scan you so you can make your plane.


Packing smartly for your trip can make things easier for yourself as you go through airport security.

Regarding bringing fluids with you. New airport regulations do not allow fluids in carry-on luggage over 3 ounce bottles in a quart sized Ziploc bag.

This means you must drain your entire body of blood and urine before passing through security. Every person walking through the secure area must be a dry husk by law, so they cannot possibly use their bodily fluids to build any sort of detonation device.

See, what you may not be aware of is, urine contains ammonia. And under the proper conditions, ammonia can be a very noxious gas. Dehydration is the only way to absolutely ensure everyone remains safe.

Remember to cut off all fluids two days before any air travel plans. Three ounce cup-sized beverages will be served on the plane.

NOTE: You will now be charged $10 for all three ounce cup-sized beverages.

Regarding Carry-on Luggage. Each passenger is allowed two pieces of carry-on luggage. One must fit under the seat in front of you. The other must be stowed in the overhead compartments.

Due to recent cutbacks, the size of the overhead compartments is now the size of a child's lunchbox. So remember-- your case must now be no larger than a nine inch by nine inch square.

Also, because recent flights may be overbooked, the seat width now comfortably fits actor Verne Troyer (AKA "Mini-Me"). You will want to slim down accordingly.


The process of getting through airport security is an important one, and it is as much about having the proper attitude as anything else.

The best overall advice I can give you is to approach all security agents as if you were approaching the Soup Nazi. Polite, forward-moving, quiet, and no unnecessary greetings to startle them...

Specifically, we recommend the following:

Don't wait for that elderly lady who tries to merge in front of you. You will "hold up the line." And security will yell at you for this. Politeness does not matter in our secure world of today. Run the elderly lady over.

Don't get too eager about going through the metal detector, even if you're the next in line. Stay next to your own items on the conveyor belt and walk with them until they are scanned. Or else, security will yell at you. Remember, you could inadvertently stand next to the belongings of a person who has the nerve to carry 6 ounces of shampoo instead of 3. And that is a threat to our nation.


And by following these helpful tips, we at Of Cabbages and Kings hope you will experience the exciting, smooth and probe-free holiday vacation experience you deserve.

Disclaimer: The information on this page is in no way accurate or represents anything even remotely related to current airport security guidelines. Please contact your local airport for real and for true guidelines, or to speak to the security officer named Mongo.

Thank you.



Miss Shirl said...

Lol! I could really use the vallium. Won't be taking a plane but my family is real nutty. :)

Unknown said...

Shirley- I think we might just have a few takers for the Valium this coming season. :)

Anonymous said...


Buy a train ticket.
Wear anything you feel like.
Enjoy the journey.

Very frankly, i have started disliking air travel.

Unknown said...

Ibne Adam- I hear you. I actually only do it once a year, for that very same reason. If I didn't have such a distance to go, the train would be a good option.

Babs (Beetle) said...

Oh I am so glad I don't travel by air any more - not that I did often anyway.

Da Old Man said...

The Mrs and I go through airport security about twice a month. We never fly anywhere. She likes getting frisked, and I like taking my pants off in front of a room full of strangers.

Unknown said...

Babs- I actually end up keeping a lot of toiletries at my Dad's just so I don't have to deal with all the de-fluidization processes.

Da Old Man- Ironic, you'll do at the airport what you fight the nurses not to do at the hospital. But I guess it's what they say, "Context is everything". :)

Chaotically Calm said...

Since my very unpleasant experience of having to stand in the black box while some overly masculine woman patted me down and scanned my body for sharp objects with a metal detector I've gone with the sweats motto for all personal travel. And to think the only reason the dectector went off was due to the underwire in my bra, needless to say I was very annoyed.

During that same trip I was annoyed to have to toss my 3.5 ounces of face wash out in the airport trash can, and for the record how is that safe if it were a bomb?

Take the train, the ride is longer but so much more pleasant and you can use your computer.

Matt said...

Sweats are for people who've given up in life. Head to Walmart and you'll see dozens.

You should work for the airlines.

Unknown said...

Chaotically Calm- AH YES-- the underwire beeping issue... I totally FORGOT about that one, good call.

The problem with me wearing sweats on my next trip, is I'm going to Florida. Do you know what people look at you like when you're wandering around 90 degree Miami in sweats?

Matt- Um, no. No I shouldn't. :) PS- I know your fondness for Walmart. heheheheh

Anonymous said...

Seriously, you want that I should go through all of that AND try to avoid Mongo, but you refuse to give me Valium?!! Sure, you just want me to be the crazy woman in line so that you can breeze through with your 6oz shampoo.

Unknown said...

Angie- Ah, you have figured out my ulterior motive! But I NEED that extra 3 ounces of shampoo-- really, I DO!

ReformingGeek said...

This is great advice. I thought about flying in my birthday suit but I wouldn't want to get in trouble for distracting security folks with my huge boobs (ha!), my tattoos or while I'm undoing all the body piercings and putting them each in a separate bin to go through the xray machine. ;-)

Unknown said...

Reforming Geek- See, that's one of the things I like about you-- you're always thinking about the feelings of others.

I made the mistake of trying to put my carryon once in one of those bins. It wasn't perfectly flat, but it fit. And WHOO! I heard about it. "Does that fit there?"

"Er, well... kinda."

"Take it out."

I'm really looking forward to this Thanksgiving!!

Anonymous said...

Man, it feels like hundreds of years since I last visited here. My computer's not just merely dead; it's really most sincerely dead. ; (

Actually, I've heard the flashlights aren't all that small! Thanks for the tips...I'd still rather drive, or take the train!

Anonymous said...

Yes don't forget about the underwire bras! I think I confuse those poor people because half the time one side has broken and I've removed it so I'm only wired on one side. Therefore I submit that we go braless and in sweats. Now that is a charming picture. Ha!!!!

Unknown said...

Greg- Hee- Now I have the Lollypop Guild song running through my head... :) Thanks for that.

Chyna- HA! I can only imagine the looks on their faces with that. The woman with one bionic boob!

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

"Every person walking through the secure area must be a dry husk by law"

Unknown said...

NannyGoats- Well, I know I personally stop all liquids because I'm usually stuck in the middle seat on the plane, but still... :) There are regulations.

Chat Blanc said...

I also recommend not wearing an underwire bra. Unless you like being patted down and scanned with a wand.

Anonymous said...

"Remember, you could inadvertently stand next to the belongings of a person who has the nerve to carry 6 ounces of shampoo instead of 3. And that is a threat to our nation."


Thank you so much for the helpful handy hints! I will try to remember to print that out next time I travel by air... in the meantime I'd like to add one of my own.

If you happen to be travelling with a teenage boy, be aware that they have a penchant for chains, keys, assorted small tools, belts with huge buckles, nose rings, ear rings, lip rings, and strange metal objects with no discernable purpose and they like to keep all these things upon their person at all times.

If, like me, you've forgotten to check your little cherub thoroughly before allowing him into the car en route to your destination, my advice is to pretend you're not with him when this gets discovered. Just watch from a distance his gleeful grins as he gets patted down by three burly security men and tosses about three pounds of assorted metal into the tray one of them is holding out for the purpose.

Trust me. Rolling your eyes at him and laughing fondly will NOT help.

Anonymous said...

I've always wondered about my brother with the piercings. There are some body parts that my self would not want to be inserting metal in and out of.

And how do those people with the metal balls inserted underneath the scalp deal with this metal lockdown? Now that would make a trip to the airport worthwhile! ;)

Unknown said...

Chyna- I often wonder about folks with a steel plate in their heads (makes me think of Randy Quaid's character in Christmas Vacation)... or a metal hip.

Maybe you can present a note from your doctor.

Unknown said...

Jay- Your description of your son is terrific-- and very very visual. The poor thing, how ever does he survive? May he never get near a supermagnet or he'll spend a lifetime extracting himself.

JD at I Do Things said...

Boy, I wish people followed the "child's lunchbox" rule regarding carryon luggage. As for jewelry, I can't fly without my lucky bracelets, earrings, and necklace. And watch. Yes, I have to take them all off when I go thru security, but I'm telling you: the plane will not fly if I'm not wearing them.

JD at I Do Things

Unknown said...

JD- Better safe than sorry, eh? :)