Some really, REALLY great airport tips from Wired.com.
Before You Reach the Screening Area
1. Wear a jacket, even if it’s warm. They’re the perfect vessel for all the stuff you carry in your pockets. Since you’re required to remove your jacket before entering the body scanner, stuff your wallet, keys, phone, and anything else you’re carrying into the pockets. Same with anything on your wrists. This avoids a mountain of stuff in the bin, the chance of leaving something behind, and lets you get everything back in order on the way to your flight. It also gives you something to keep you from shivering if the plane is cold.
2. Keep your ticket and ID (passport or license) in a separate pocket with nothing else so you can get at them easily.
3. Shoes that slip on and off. If you’re still stuck taking off your shoes, make sure you can pull them on and off with ease. Stash the knee-high Doc Martens in your bag and wear a pair of kicks that take seconds to slip out of.
4. Don’t have your laptop buried. Make sure it’s in a separate pocket or sticking out slightly as you get in line. Nothing’s more annoying — for both you and the passengers behind you — than having to rip apart your carry-on to retrieve your computer.
In the Line
1. Don’t worry about finding the shortest line. Look for people who don’t know what they’re doing. Rookie travelers, people with children, and anyone who looks like a deer in headlights are to be avoided. Trust us on this.
2. Have everything ready. Jacket stuffed. Belt off. Bag open.
3. Grab two trays.
4. Pull your laptop out and put it in the first tray, then cover it with the second tray. This keeps things together and limits the amount of juggling you’ll do before reaching the scanner.
5. Take your shoes off and place them in the top bin. Then add your jacket, then your belt on top. You want to put the items in the tray the same way you’d put them back on.
6. Put your jacket/shoes/belt combo bin onto the conveyer first so you can start putting yourself back together before your other bags arrive.
7. Then the bin with your laptop, then your backpack, purse or personal items, then your carry-on.
On the Other Side
1. Get your belt and jacket on first, then your shoes. It’s easier to get away with the important stuff first and worry about walking in your socks for a few feet.
2. Stash your laptop back in your bag immediately and close it so nothing falls out.
3. Get the heck out of the way. Even if your shoes aren’t on and you only have one arm in your jacket sleeve, get out of the screening area ASAP. Fewer bodies means less congestion for your fellow travelers.