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The TSA's Helpful Holiday Hints

By Robert Firpo-Cappiello
December 20, 2012
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Courtesy <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/kjarrett/3032191881/" target="_blank">kjarrett/Flickr</a>

The Transportation Security Administration expects more than 15 million people to travel over the holiday season. To take some of the pain out of the inevitable crowds, lines, and security hassles, the agency issued a set of Helpful Holiday Hints as well as some news about changes in its procedures that should help streamline your trip.

While some of the TSA's hints may not rock the world of seasoned travelers (yeah, you already "give yourself enough time to arrive at the airport early," right?), some will be surprisingly helpful. Here, some of the top hints and some welcome changes:

Visit tsa.gov or download the MyTSA app to make sure you understand what items are prohibited from carry-ons and checked luggage. You can also call 855/787-2227 for the TSA Cares Hotline.

Pack all liquids, gels, and aerosols in a one-quart resealable bag, and pack it in the front pocket of your carry-on.

Tape your name and contact info on any large electronic items, such as laptops and tablets, and pack them in the top layer of carry-ons for easy access.

If you're traveling with kids, ask if there is a Family/Medical Liquids Lane that can offer you special assistance.

Screening procedures for passengers 75 and older and for kids 12 and under have changed, reducing pat-downs and allowing some passengers to leave their shoes on through security.

Snow globe lovers, rejoice! Snow globes that are smaller than a tennis ball are permitted as long as the entire globe and base will fit in the same one-quart resealable bag as your other liquids.

Talk to us! We'd love to hear your best—and worst—holiday airport stories.

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