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TSA should expand types and quantities of sanitizers permitted as carry-on

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For multi-hour domestic and for even longer international flights, there will expectantly be a need for multiple types and quantities of sanitizing products available for use.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) should re-adjust again its hand sanitizer policy by increasing the quantity and the type of sanitizing products travelers may carry-through screening and then onto aircraft. 

Presently, the TSA “is allowing one liquid hand sanitizer container, up to 12 ounces per passenger, in carry-on bags until further notice. Since these containers exceed the standard allowance typically permitted through a checkpoint, they will need to be screened separately. This will add some time to your checkpoint screening experience. Please keep in mind that all other liquids, gels and aerosols brought to a checkpoint continue to be limited to 3.4 ounces or 100 milliliters carried in a one quart-size bag.”

While the “until further notice” change to permit one 12-ounce container of hand sanitizer is useful, it is not the holistic approach truly necessary to fully benefit travelers- particularly families and families with children who require additional and continuing attention throughout the airport and aircraft experience.

For example, if one or more travelers are separated in a terminal or if one or more travelers need to use the restroom or food service facility in a terminal and on the aircraft, the existing TSA policy would prevent travelers from separating because each traveler would want to sanitize their immediate area.

For multi-hour domestic and for even longer international flights, there will expectantly be a need for multiple types and quantities of sanitizing products available for use.

Travelers will likely share their sanitizer with others, as a courtesy, which will lessen what is available for the traveler.  Certainly, we all want sharing.

Travelers will also misplace their sanitizer- whether on their way to an airport, at the airport, on the aircraft, at their destination.  Having additional products with them will lessen the impact and the accompanying stress.  As we all know, prices for products at the airport are generally higher than from outside of the airport.

Once a traveler reaches their destination, and begins using sanitizing product in taxis, at hotels and restaurants, and within other facilities, replenishing sanitizing products might not be possible; and costs might be prohibitive.  Having additional supplies will be useful.

The Suggestions: Consider amending the current TSA policy which permits one 12-ounce container of hand sanitizer be expanded to also include: two 3.4-ounce (travel size) containers of hand sanitizer and one 12-ounce container each of liquid, aerosol, gel, cream, paste, and wipes sanitizers.

While there may be a delay to the screening with additional sanitizing items in the screening process, the benefit is absolute.

Such a change would be consistent with TSA advice: “Travelers are reminded to follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) travel and prevention guidance regarding COVID-19. This includes practicing good hygiene, such as washing your hands regularly.  In addition to those CDC recommendations, travelers are encouraged to wash their hands directly before and after completing the security screening process and that you place personal items such as wallets, keys or phone in your carry-on property that will be screened through the X-ray system.”

With traveling becoming ever-more challenging, the TSA permitting an abundance of sanitizer products for every passenger will be a welcomed decision to help lessen everyone’s levels of stress and create a healthier travel experience.

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