TSA Shares Traveling Tips Ahead Of Thanksgiving Holiday

Bernie Tafoya
November 19, 2018 - 2:17 pm

WBBM Newsradio/Bernie Tafoya

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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The city and the TSA said they’ll be more than ready for the hundreds of thousands of travelers who’ll be passing through O'Hare and Midway Airports over the next seven days. 

The city estimates two million travelers will pass through O’Hare and Midway Airports between Tuesday and next Monday. Chicago Aviation Cmsr. Jamie Rhee said overtime has been approved so enough staff can handle about one-and-a-half million travelers at O'Hare and 540,000 at Midway over the next week. 

The commissioner said getting through security still should be painless.

"Working closely with our partners with the TSA, O'Hare and Midway, for the last two years, have maintained wait times less than 15 minutes during the peak season," Rhee said.

She said that, according to the Wall Street Journal, O'Hare's security checkpoint average time is the lowest among the top 20 airports in the United States.

Still, the TSA suggests you arrive at the airport two hours before your flight. TSA Regional Director Steve Lorincz said that's "because of the volumes that we’re going to see, not only at the ticket counters, but also going through security, we want to make sure that everyone has a seamless experience."

Some of those travelers are expected to have parts of their holiday meals with them, and the TSA said that's fine, as long as you follow the rules. 

If you're taking a turkey on your flight, TSA regional spokesman Mark Howell said "it needs to be frozen". If it has started to thaw and you can tell there are liquids in the plastic wrapping, it will fall under the "liquids" rule for airplanes.  No more than 3.4 oz of liquid in a container are allowed on flights.

TSA officer Peter Bodino said he's already seen travelers come through Midway this week with turkeys. One of the turkeys was brought in a cooler, which he said is perfectly fine.

Any dish that might even be considered to have liquid in it should be put in your checked baggage and sealed so it won’t spill. Items like pies and dinner rolls can be carried on, but must go through screening.

Carving knives are also allowed as checked items. 

If you have any questions about what's allowed and not TSA suggests you visit this website:  https://www.tsa.gov/travel/travel-tips/turkey-trot-your-way-through-airport