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If you ask most travelers this holiday season, they will tell you the biggest headache in airports is the security line. Shoes on? Shoes off? How much liquid can I have again? Beyond slowly kicking your carry-on through the line is about the pinnacle of boredom.
Surprisingly, there are ways to make this experience worse. So if you're trying to make your trip through airport security as smooth as possible, here's what not to do:
1. Carry a Gun
You would think this one would be obvious, but then you read about all the people, including Playboy models and famous athletes, that get caught carrying loaded guns through airport security. No firearms, folks.
2. Be Drunk
Airlines can refuse to board you if you're intoxicated. And if you decide to go on a drunken rampage in the airport, you might be facing a lawsuit as well. There are plenty of bars on the other side of the security screening, so maybe wait to have a cocktail until after the X-ray and pat-down, and maybe keep the pre-flight drinking to a minimum.
3. Have Anything That Even Looks Like a Bomb
Your watch tells time. But if your watch looks like a timing device for an explosive, be ready to get arrested at airport security. Of course, wearing a timepiece that has "a toggle switch, wires, and fuses protruding from it" is probably asking for trouble, but why risk it? Make sure everything on your person and in your carry-on is very clearly not a bomb.
4. Carry Drugs
Recreational weed might be legal in your state of departure. Heck, it might even be legal in your state of arrival. But it's federal law that governs the friendly skies, and marijuana remains a schedule I narcotic -- and thus illegal -- under federal statutes. And where federal and state laws differ, federal law always trumps. You're free to try concealing cannabis through airport security, but chances are the consequences will be a bit more severe than a note from TSA.
5. Try and Skip the Line
Nope, it's not going to work, even if you're Kim and Kanye. Trying to avoid the security screening is a great way to make yourself look suspicious, even if you have nothing to hide. And if you do have something to hide, definitely don't try to sneak it past airport security.