Skip to main content

Southwest Airlines Community

Holiday Travel Meets Enhanced Security Measures


As you prepare to travel over the extended holiday season, we want to make you aware that TSA security measures implemented this summer for carryon baggage are now in place at some airports. During the busy holiday travel season, this will increase the time it takes to move through security checkpoints. We recommend that you find your suggested airport arrival time to navigate through airport security. These strengthened security measures are not new, but were implemented in a slow roll out beginning in mid-summer. Some airports are just now being included in the new screening requirements, so many of our Customers will see them for the first time when they travel during the holidays. These enhanced security measures do not apply to Passengers enrolled in TSA Pre✓® who are using TSA Pre✓® lanes. Here’s a quick rundown of the changes, plus some tips for you:


  • This summer, TSA implemented screening procedures in U.S. airports for carryon items that require travelers to place all electronics larger than a cell phone in bins for X-ray screening in standard lanes.
  • Additionally, we recommend consolidating food items into a single bag or zip-top bag should removal and inspection be requested or required.    


The purpose of these changes is to raise the baseline for aviation security by strengthening the overall security of our commercial aviation network to keep flying as a safe option for everyone. In addition to these enhanced security measures, TSA identified ways to improve screening procedures with quicker and more targeted measures to clear the bags.


  • In standard screening lanes, TSA officers will be stationed in front of the checkpoint X-ray machines to guide passengers through the screening process and recommend how best to arrange their carryon items for X-ray screening.
  • Travelers are encouraged to organize their carryon bags and keep them uncluttered to ease the screening process and keep the lines moving.
  • There are no changes to what travelers can bring through the checkpoint; food and liquid items that comply with the 3-1-1 liquids rule, electronics, and books continue to be allowed in carryon bags.


Of course, Safety is always our primary concern at Southwest Airlines, and we look forward to seeing many happy families over the upcoming holiday season.