Ever had to take your laptop out of its bag and had it gone over with a fine-tooth comb at an airport? We have, and they turned it on, and ran over it with a swab to check for explosive residue. Yet another time-eating ritual.
On Friday the TSA announced that Saturday, new laptop bag rules would go into effect, and laptops would be allowed to stay in some
laptop bags deemed "checkpoint-friendly."
The TSA asked asked laptop bag manufacturers to design bags that would not obstruct the image of a laptop when put through an X-ray machine, and chose the three styles above, butterfly, trifold, and sleeve, after submissions were made.
In a press release, the TSA said
If you intend to use a 'checkpoint friendly' laptop bag once they are on the market, make sure to check that:
Remember, a well designed 'checkpoint friendly' bag must be packed appropriately if you intend to leave your laptop in your bag for screening.
- Your laptop bag has a designated laptop-only section that can lay flat on the X-ray belt
- There are no metal snaps, zippers or buckles inside, underneath or on-top of the laptop-only section
- There are no pockets on the inside or outside of the laptop-only section
- There is nothing in the laptop compartment other than the laptop
- You have completely unfolded your bag so that there is nothing above or below the laptop-only section, allowing the bag to lay flat on the X-ray belt
Yes, you still have to unfold the bag completely, and the TSA went on to say that just because they have these no procedures in place doesn't mean your laptop won't get extra examination.
Given TSA’s use of random screening protocols, TSA reserves the right to re-screen any bag or laptop regardless of the design of the bag.