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Expect longer lines than normal at Idaho Falls TSA checkpoint this summer


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IDAHO FALLS — Summer means more travelers going through the Idaho Falls Regional Airport and the Transportation Security Agency wants you to be prepared.

With the airport adding more airlines, flights and destinations, passenger numbers are only expected to grow. Even with the world recovering from COVID-19, passenger numbers are working their way back to normal.

“We’re expecting over 20% growth from our previous busiest summer which was 2019,” Andy Coose, the TSA Federal Security Director for Idaho, told “It’s going to be a quite busy summer and people need to be prepared.”

Before arriving at the airport, TSA officials remind passengers to check their luggage. Coose said to pack smart and make sure prohibited items are not being brought to the screening checkpoint like Weapons, tools and other dangerous items. You can visit the TSA’s website or check TSA’s app on the“Can I Bring?” feature to see such items.

“We ask people to pack light and pack smart,” Coose said. “Make sure that only the items that can be allowed are in your carry-on luggage. So no large liquids and gels.”

In 2006, TSA implemented the 3.4 ounces rule following a foiled terrorist attack in which the perpetrators tried to sneak explosives disguised as liquids onto airplanes. The rule still stands today, limiting passengers to a quart-sized bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes in their carry-on bag. The containers for the items in the bag are limited to 3.4 ounces or less per item.

“Save yourself some time, save yourself some aggravation,” Coose said. “Don’t bring those items (large liquids and gels) with you in your carry-on, place them in your checked luggage.”

While the Idaho Falls airport has renovated its terminal with a brand new TSA checkpoint, officials expect the number of departing passengers at peak times could exceed the capacity. The busiest times at the Idaho Falls airport checkpoint are from 5 a.m. to 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays, Sundays and Mondays tend to have more travelers, according to TSA.

“I want folks to pack a little bit of extra patience when they come,” Coose said. “As I said before it’s going to be a summer they’ve never seen … They need to make sure they plan a little extra time get (and) get to the airport early.”

TSA recommends people arrive two hours before the scheduled departure time at airports across the country.

“Make sure you do that and you should be fine,” Coose said.