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The Screening Process

A primary goal of TSA is to treat all passengers with courtesy, dignity, and respect during the security screening processes. In support of this goal TSA has trained its screeners in the proper treatment of passengers and their belongings. That specialized training includes accommodating passengers with special needs. We have conducted outreach to religious and disability organizations to ensure that our screeners are sensitive to all passengers.

The Process

TSA has established procedures to minimize the intrusiveness of the screening process for passengers. Though you may be unfamiliar with some of these changes please be assured that they are all based on sound security protocol.

Private Screening

Your screening may include a hand-wanding procedure and pat-down inspection. You may request a private area for your personal screening. The private area will either be a separate room or an area out of the view of the general public.

Same-Gender Screening

If you are asked to undergo a personal screening you will be provided a screener of the same gender except in extraordinary circumstances. In some cases you may have to wait for a screener of your gender to conduct the screening. You will be advised if the wait will be more than a few minutes.

Private Baggage Screening

If it is necessary to open your checked or carry-on baggage TSA will make every effort to do so discretely. At most airports there are tables with sidewalls to protect your privacy.

TIP: We recommend that you think carefully about what private items you place in your carry-on or checked baggage since your baggage may be opened and searched.

Passengers with Disabilities or Medical Concerns

If you have a disability medical concern or other special circumstance please refer to the Travelers with Disabilities and Medical Conditions section of the TSA Web site for details on what you can expect at the passenger security checkpoint.

You are encouraged to communicate with the screener both before and during the screening process so that the screener is aware of your situation at all times.

While the procedure may differ slightly in order to accommodate your situation the same level and rigor of screening that is maintained for all passengers will be maintained.