Air travel is renowned for being one laden with wait times, whether its anticipated waits at the check-in desk or baggage belt, or as the result of airline delays. However, there are ways passengers can take waiting times into their own hands.
Airport security is an essential part of air travel, ensuring the safety of everybody on board flights.
It is also one part of the airport process where passengers frequently find themselves waiting in long lines for extended periods of time.
A report at the end of last year by Which? Travel found Manchester to be the UK’s worst culprit for extended security wait times.
Passengers experienced waiting times of up to 16 minutes per passenger.
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An airport worker reveals the key to speeding up security
An airport worker suggests collecting and stacking trays to speed up the process
London Stansted came a close second with an average waiting time of 13.7 minutes, while London Luton took the third spot with 11.7 minutes.
While wait times are the result of all manner of factors, a security worker has revealed one simple way travellers can speed up the process.
In a Reddit forum dedicated to airport worker advice, they said: “Pick up the tray that you put your bags and stuff on for the x-ray machine and stack it. Otherwise, the conveyor belt gets backed up, slowing everyone down.”
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Travellers are issued with trays to place their bags and personal possession within before moving they pass through the X-ray machine.
While passengers are quick to remove their items from the tray on the other side, it seems many then abandon the tray, leaving it on the belt.
This can cause somewhat of a traffic jam for travellers waiting for their bags to be scanned.
The worker continues: “Last time I flew, the queue was moving slowly, and I picked up and stacked about a dozen trays that the people in front of me had not bothered to move.
Airport security workers ensure the safety of passengers
“People looked at me like I was some sort of god.”
Another security worker pointed out that there are some steps passengers can take leading up to the screening.
“When going through the scanner make sure your pockets are completely empty,” they advise.
“If you have carry-on bags take them off the belt and slide down.
“You don’t have to get ready at the table you can get your stuff and put yourself back together in the terminal.
“A full belt is the cause if a lot of the slowdowns on the checkpoint.”
They add: “If possible wear shoes easy to take on and put on.”
Passengers found to be carrying items that are banned from flights are also likely to slow the process down.
According to the Gov.uk website, airport security is allowed to ban any items coming through security.
The website warns: “Airport security staff will not let anything through that they consider dangerous – even if it’s normally allowed in hand luggage.”