10 Things We Learned from the TSA's Instagram Account
by Erin Gifford | January 4, 2017
technology evergreen tips & strategy flight

10 Things We Learned from the TSA's Instagram Account
TSA

When Rolling Stone announced its picks for the 100 best Instagram accounts, some were shocked to find that the TSA came in fourth place -- even beating out Beyoncé -- but if you scroll through its feed, it's not hard to see why. The account is both informative and entertaining. Here are 10 things we learned through the TSA account.

1. The TSA is hip to social media.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BOV5ZQdAzwQ/?hl=en

If you’re not sure whether you can bring a certain item in your carry-on, tweet a photo to @AskTSA on Twitter or send it to them through Facebook Messenger ahead of your flight.

2. You can try to hide items, but oh yes, agents will find them.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BJ3lvsMgCBr/?taken-by=tsa

They’ve found everything from knives hidden in pill bottles to razor blades concealed in the insole of a sneaker.

3. Every airport has a lost and found desk for items left behind at TSA checkpoints.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BN0JiqUAmAy/?taken-by=tsa

You can look up the phone number for the desk at each airport online.

4. Laptops are one of the most common items left behind.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BNkggwMgZef/?taken-by=tsa

Pro-tip: Tape a business card to your laptop with your name and phone number. This way, TSA can at least try to reach you before you board your flight.

5. The agency has a list of no-no items on its website.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BNCbCgBBIly/?taken-by=tsa

From food and firearms to sporting goods and knitting needles, the TSA has a list of prohibited items on their website that is frequently updated.

6. Explosive-sniffing dogs get loads of love when they’re off the clock.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BLRbVpYhl2L/?taken-by=tsa

Don’t feel bad when you see these canines wearing their “do not pet” vests -- they’re working to keep everyone safe.

7. The TSA confiscates around 70 firearms every week from carry-on bags.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BOBJpDOgax1/?taken-by=tsa

However, you can pack them in your checked bags. Packing guidelines can be found here.

8. The agency does not regulate transporting insects in your carry-on bags.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BKHDwDvgC2y/?taken-by=tsa

Contact your airline about its individual policy as it relates to bringing live bugs on its aircraft.

9. More automated screening lanes are on the way.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BNzuzwAgmHV/?taken-by=tsa

These security lanes have already been introduced in Atlanta, Newark Liberty, and Chicago O'Hare with the goal of cutting down on time spent in line.

10. There is never a lack of wacky items found in carry-ons in the TSA feed.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BOF-qykhoCb/

The agency even has a video of the Top 10 Most Unusual Checkpoint Finds -- Hello Kitty pistol, anyone?

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