We all know how strenuous the security process can be for our carry-on luggage as well as our body. Countless scanners, random searches, x-rays, pat-downs, you name it. But what about our checked luggage? What security measures are in place for them? Do they go through security in the first place?
Let’s take a look at what journey is ahead of your checked luggage to see whether or not any weapons, drugs, or other contraband can successfully get through airport security. The short answer is yes, your checked bags will go through a scanning process, much like yourself and your carry-on items. But what exactly lies ahead for your checked bags?
Checked Bags Scanning Process
Checked bags go through the same scanning process that your carry-on items go through. They’re loaded on a conveyor belt and scanned under an x-ray to see what contents are inside. If there are any suspicious items within, the airport security might go through your luggage and search for the suspicious item. Once the scan is passed, your luggage will continue and be loaded onto the plane.
A Summary of the Checked Luggage Journey
Here’s a quick breakdown of what your checked luggage goes through after you’ve dropped it off.
Weighed and Dropped Off
By checking your bags, you’re weighing them and then handing them off to the airline. After it’s been weighed, the airline staff will place it onto a conveyor belt where it passes through to the next leg of its journey: security.
Scanned By Security
As we mentioned before, the checked bag will then pass through an x-ray scanner where its contents are analyzed by security. If any contents are deemed suspicious by the security personnel, they will be searched and cleared, moving it on to the next phase.
Boarded on the Plane
Once your luggage has passed through security, it will be boarded onto the flight and loaded onto the plane. Here, it will rest in the cabin until the flight is complete. Once you’ve landed, your luggage will be offloaded and either sent back to the airport for you to pick up, or loaded directly onto your connecting flight.
Transitioning With a Connecting Flight
The transitioning phase of connecting flights is where most luggage items are lost. Luckily, there are no added security checks to hold the process up, but if one flight was late, your luggage might not make it to your connecting flight. The offloading process can be slow as it is making it slow to get your luggage from one plane to another.
If your connecting plane is ready to go but your luggage hasn’t made it yet, you might have to wait around for your luggage to be shipped out to you separately.
All in all, much like ourselves and our carry-on bags, there is a security scan that your checked bags must go through. However, if you’re transitioning to a connecting flight, your luggage will be sent directly from one plane to another without a second security scan.