Snow globes, peanut butter and studded wallets are just a few things on the Transportation Security Administration’s list of prohibited items travelers should be aware of during this holiday season.
Officials at Charlotte Douglas International Airport are preparing for the second-busiest travel time of the year after just under 211,000 passengers originating in Charlotte traveled through the airport over Thanksgiving – a 6 percent increase from last year.
Herbert Judon, assistant aviation director of operations for Charlotte Douglas, said while the airport is expecting more travelers when the holiday travel season begins Dec. 19, it should be less congested than the four- or five-day travel period over Thanksgiving.
“Christmas tends to be more spread out and more prolonged, so we tend to see kind of more regular patterns in terms of the days where people tend to come to the airport,” he said.
Judon said some ticket counters and security checkpoints will be open as early as 3 a.m. and 4 a.m., respectively.
But passengers should be aware of the breadth of prohibited items in carry-ons, said TSA spokeswoman Sari Koshetz.
She said peanut butter counts as a liquid, and if the snow globe doesn’t meet the 3-1-1 guidelines, it can’t go in a carry-on:
All liquids, gels and aerosols must be 3.4 ounces or less and fit into one quart-size, clear, plastic, zip-lock bag, and only one bag per passenger is permitted, according to TSA guidelines.
Exercise items such as weights are also prohibited as they can be used as a bludgeon, Koshetz said.
Passengers can bring wrapped gifts, she said, but they run the risk of being unwrapped if TSA agents think the packages are suspicious.
TSA can impose civil penalties of up to $11,000 for violating the list of prohibited items.
“Definitely leave your guns, your grenades and your knives at home,” Koshetz said.
Katie Cody, spokesperson for American Airlines, said extra flights have been added and additional employees will be on hand to help passengers.
“It will just be a very busy time so we encourage customers again to get here early, use the app, use the website, check ahead of time and hopefully everybody can get to where they need to be for this holiday season,” she said.