Memorable experiences going through airport security?

TomYagher

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Jun 24, 2018
Posts
103
Security express path in Cairo, some random who I'm sure did not officially work there asked for 150 Egyptian pounds, told him only had 20 left as I was leaving the country. Bags were picked up, walked to the front of the line, someone else's were removed and mine plonked in front. Then I was pushed (literally) through the scanner.

Had a really nice chat with immigration lady in SFO, about 15 minutes. She seemed genuinely friendly and interested as to why I was spending one night there on the way to Japan from Sydney (was my last chance to fly a QF 747 upstairs, and then was trying JAL F to Haneda). Sent in for a secondary check where apparently my fingerprints had matched to someone on a list somewhere. Thankfully was out after another 15 minutes.

Also been questioned over ear plugs in India, that was leaving Delhi.

Set the bomb detector off at Dubbo, no idea why. Thorough search of luggage and sent through.
 
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TomYagher

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Jun 24, 2018
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103
No, they are skilled at appearing to be so. That you had the "enhanced" secondary treatment supports that. Glad you got out so quickly🤣
Which confused me as so many people have told me how rude/horrible the officers can be…when overall it was a ‘pleasant’ experience
 
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Which confused me as so many people have told me how rude/horrible the officers can be
The stories that make it into the media tend to be the ones that will capture the most clickbait. A story that said that a secondary interrogation was pleasant would not gain much clickbait. And the people that didn't get a bad experience would very likely not report it to the media in the first place.
 

vetrade

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Nov 1, 2011
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This is not an airport security story but it does go to the officiousness of some people vested with power........
In the 1990's Mrs V and I were on our way to the Melbourne Cup and the police were doing random breath tests about 200m from the entrance to the Members Car Park at Flemington where we were headed. It was about 10am and as I complied with the test I jokingly said I hadn't even made it into the event so I hadn't had time for a drink. Big mistake.
The obviously grumpy policeman directed me to park on the side of the road and he and a colleague then proceeded to keep us there for exactly 1hr and 5 minutes while they did a roadworthy on the 3 week old BMW 5 series I had just bought Mrs V for her birthday! Needless to say they didn't find anything amiss.
 
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vetrade

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Nov 1, 2011
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A client had business in Las Vegas and took me along as a consultant (which is the PC way of saying we had a "boy's trip" at his expense).
I walked past a life size sculpture of a gorilla's head a few times in one of the shops at the Sahara Casino where we were staying and I took a liking to it.
Next thing you know I arrived back in MEL with quite a large box which aroused the suspicions of the customs people, who asked what was in it. Before I had barely managed to say "A gorilla's head" my prankster friend didn't help when he blurted out "I told you bringing wildlife into the country would get us in to trouble".
The serious look on their faces turned friendly once it was confirmed the head was only a sculpture. It still has pride of place in our house today!
 

ddaann

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Joined
Sep 17, 2014
Posts
9
At an airport overseas in what was a war zone… at the air movements terminal:
armed forces personnel carrying weapons were being directed through the metal detector scanner; beeeep, beeeep, beeeep. One guy goes to just walk directly from his seat out to the waiting military aircraft and gets told off because he needs to go around and through the scanner.

You probably only need one guess about the accents of the air movements staff.
In a former life I was transiting through a large hub airport in a sandy place on my way somewhere for some ill-advised war-related work and had a Pelican case with some 'interesting' items, but nothing dangerous. At the time, all luggage brought into this airport went with you through the security scanners prior to check-in.

When it came to my turn, I suggested they may want to grab a supervisor and take me to a separate room to check my items, even discreetly showing that I had an official/diplomatic passport in the process. Nope! The security guy asks me to open the case then proceeds to take everything out, holds it up and waves it around asking me what it was. He then gets to an interesting container which he opens up only to discover a military-spec gas mask and all the spare canisters, which look kind of scary to regular people!

After this the supervisor rushes over, quickly tells off the security guard and tells me in no uncertain terms to pass through security and go anywhere else in the airport but near them!
 

clifford

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Joined
Jul 6, 2004
Posts
2,390
In a former life I was transiting through a large hub airport in a sandy place on my way somewhere for some ill-advised war-related work and had a Pelican case with some 'interesting' items, but nothing dangerous. At the time, all luggage brought into this airport went with you through the security scanners prior to check-in.

When it came to my turn, I suggested they may want to grab a supervisor and take me to a separate room to check my items, even discreetly showing that I had an official/diplomatic passport in the process. Nope! The security guy asks me to open the case then proceeds to take everything out, holds it up and waves it around asking me what it was. He then gets to an interesting container which he opens up only to discover a military-spec gas mask and all the spare canisters, which look kind of scary to regular people!

After this the supervisor rushes over, quickly tells off the security guard and tells me in no uncertain terms to pass through security and go anywhere else in the airport but near them!
Well I had a few memorable experiences going through security at SYD T2, T3 and OOL this week (around lunchtime).

They were memorable because I was expecting huge queues and wait times (based on recent press reports), but I each case I just breezed though in a minute or two. Extremely quiet, no queues at all!

Not to say that will be the case today or this weekend though.
 

kevviek

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Joined
Jun 29, 2014
Posts
939
A few things come to mind:

1. A criminal in the US has the same name as me. Eventually figured out why all the extra checks and ended up getting a Redress number issued by homeland security and added to my profile
2. I stopped bringing vitamins in a pill box due to the number of times my bag was inspected (with a note left inside)
3. Over-tired on one occasion, telling the customs officer in LAX I "was here for work" (instead of business) and was nearly sent home - took at least 20 minutes explaining every aspect of my trip before he let me through
4. Brought home my targets from a Las Vegas shooting range to show the kids...oops...forgot about the firearms residue
 

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