What you need to know about the new screening rules at airports

Posted on: October 29, 2010

Starting today, the Transportation Security Administration is changing the way they screen passengers .  

Gone are the good old days of just waving a wand around your body. Now the new rules say that if you set off a metal detector you have only two options. One is a full body scan and the other is an intense pat down. The pat down involves an agent running his or her hand up and down along your body including the inside of your leg. Of course this type of search involves the same gender officers and you can request a private screening at any time in the screening process.

But that isn’t all the rule changes. Now the TSA will start enforcing a program meant to better match terrorists with a formal watch list.

Here is how it works. The new TSA rule requires airlines to collect a traveler’s fun name, birth date and gender at booking. You need to provide this information at least 72 hours before a flight otherwise the airline will not issue you a boarding pass. In addition, your name on the ticket must match your name listed on your government issued ID – exactly! For example, if your first name is on your driver’s license but you go by our middle name, which may be on your ticket, you may not be able to board a plane.

Will all of this make us any safer? Will granny and grandpa need to get patted down as well as little Johnny and Susie? It seems that common sense may be eluding us right now but as you know we live in a country that is politically correct and doesn’t care who it may offend.

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