Seeking suggestions for MSP Airport Security Visuals

Back in May, I was awfully excited about the new “expert,” “casual traveler” and “family” lanes. Has it cut down on my aggravation at idiot travelers who still bring through bottled water, don’t take their belts off or leave their plane ticket in their carry-on before going through the metal detector? Sadly, no. Most of the airports I visit either don’t use this system or aren’t busy enough to have it operating when I’m there.

But I still think it has huge possibilities. I would even take it a step further…

What if TSA offered an “Airport Security Accreditation” program that required travelers to take a written AND real-world security test? If you can get your shoes off, liquids and laptop out and all your belongings into a tub in 30 seconds and not trigger any alarms on the X-Ray machine, you earn a special card that grants you access to a TSA Elite Line. Think how fast that line would move. Well, that may be a pipe dream, so for now I wish the current system was more widely implemented.

Maybe we just need to inject some local pride into the system to increase its use?

These are the visuals you see at most airports — including MSP.

But traveling to Louisville Intl-Standiford Field last week, I noticed they had customized signs showcasing Louisville’s Kentucky Derby heritage:
Louisville Intl-Standiford Field Security Sign

This got me thinking, shouldn’t MSP have customized signs? And if so, what would they be?

I have a few ideas I’ll wait a day to share. Would love to hear your suggestions and/or see your illustrated mock-ups…

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5 Comments so far

  1. yoshi on December 22nd, 2008 @ 9:39 am

    Why don’t we just get rid of procedures that have nothing to do with the security of the plane? Such as checking IDs? Just imagine the time saved with eliminating that simple step…

    Having a separate lane with people with children and disabilities makes sense as they take a lot of time to process. Everyone else – not so much.

    The ‘expert’ lane is just plane silly. Any ‘expert’ traveler carries as much stuff on the plane as possible to avoid checking in luggage. And there is no place to "prepare" to have items to remove until you actually get to the damn table. I have to carry two laptops with me? Does that disqualify me from the ‘expert’ lane?

    But I’ll throw this out there – how long do you really spend in line? Flying through Dulles, San Diego, Orlando, Vegas, and Reagan in the past month I’ve spent no more than five to ten minutes in line at any of those airports. Is there really a problem?

    Don’t get me started on the stupidity of locally customized warning signs….


  2. Justin Heideman (justinph) on December 22nd, 2008 @ 9:53 am

    I agree 100% with Yoshi. The best thing to do is to eliminate large portions of the TSA. It is all just an act to make you feel safer. None of it actually does. Bruce Schneier calls it Security Theater. Most of the money that gets spent on the TSA should be spent on intelligence so the "terrorists" never get to the airport in the first place.

    At the very least, they should immediately eliminate the shoe removal process and the liquid ban. Both do exactly nothing except make the security checkpoints more hazardous and time-wasting. The liquid ban is especially stupid. If you’re a terrorist who wants to make a liquid bomb, should such a thing even exist, you just go through time and again until you can get it past the checkpoint. Or you go through with 20 of your friends each carrying 3 oz. Or you go through carrying "medical supplies" in big 20 oz. saline solution bottles. All bypass the ban and make it pointless. If you’re a terrorist, there’s no penalty or incentive NOT to try this.

    In review, the TSA is a sham and they deserve no respect. This post legitimizes them and shills for government waste and bureaucracy.


  3. emilysaysso on December 22nd, 2008 @ 10:40 am

    Frankly, I think the main thing that needs to be improved about these lines is that people just need to CALM DOWN.

    If you’re actually at risk of missing your flight, the security people are happy to help you jump the line, and if you’re not, what are you freaking out about? Do you really need to get to your gate more quickly so you can sit there for ten more minutes?

    I consider myself an "expert" traveler and am quick about getting my shoes off and my laptop out of my bag and always have my liquids in a bag, but I still get people visibly annoyed behind me.


  4. greg on December 22nd, 2008 @ 6:14 pm

    Just got any email for 3 free months of Clear: http://www.flyclear.com, which is $199/year and lets you bypass security. Wow. Too bad we don’t have it at MSP.


  5. Justin Heideman (justinph) on December 22nd, 2008 @ 11:39 pm

    The fact that you can buy your way through security reveals how pointless it truly is.



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