Monday, November 22, 2010

Traveling over the Holidays?

If you are one of the folks lucky enough to be flying somewhere this Thanksgiving week you might have been watching with interest all the discussion on airline security. In addition you might have been wondering exactly which leftovers can go in your carry-on. Here are some web pages to check out.

Traveling Tips
  • Traveling With Food and Gifts There is nothing worse than packing some leftovers in your carry on and having them be taken by the security guard. So this is a short list of some of the things you should stuff in your checked bag (or send home if you can't stand to pay the bag check fees).
  • Liquids Policy Okay, at this point most travelers know about the 3-ounce rule, but in case you need a refresher, check out this 3-1-1 plan.
  • MyTSA Mobile This is a mobile optimized web site for searching the TSA site using your smart phone. Interestingly, this is now the only way to view security gate wait times. The non-mobile version has been taken down for improvements.
Security Debate
  1. First, let's take a look at the TSA's information:
    • Advanced Image Technology This is the machine that is causing all the debate. It will scan through your clothing and let the operator see if you are carrying anything. To see what the operator sees, check out these images. It is possible to decline the machine and instead ask to be patted down.
    • Pat-Downs Want to know what triggers a pat-down and what rights you have during a pat-down? Check it out here to find out more. You can also link to a very brief statement that TSA provided on the fact that changes are coming to the pat-downs. It is these changes (which are not spelled out) that have triggered some of the debate.
    • TSA Statement from Administrator John S. Pistole This statement was released yesterday regarding the security debate.
  2. Second, let's check out some polling.
    • CBS's Poll This poll states that 4 in 5 people support full-body scanners. This does not ask if people would be comfortable using this machine.
    • Wall Street Journal Poll This poll asks if folks "Would you be willing to undergo a body scan examination before boarding a plane?" 76.3% said they would be willing.
  3. Finally, what do you think? This is a unscientific poll of our readers to see if you would be willing to undergo a body scan at the airport.
Would you be willing to undergo a TSA body scan before boarding a plane?
Still want more? Check out the library's guides to transportation and travel information.

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