File Under: Business

No More Laptop Fooling For Traveling Monkeys

Sure, most of us are stuck at our cubes, offices, or living room couches creating websites all day. We know that some of our fellow webmonkeys have jobs that require travel, or at least have to fly to spend holidays with family.

Of course, ‘monkey travelers always have a computer with them, right? In the U.S. we’re familiar with removing our laptops from their secure holsters and placing them in a plastic tray for a ride over a conveyor belt. That may be changing.

Laptop bags - approved and disapproved styles

The U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has introduced new laptop bag procedures. No longer are travelers required to remove their laptop, as long as the bag allows a clear view of the machine.

TSA employees “know what the inside of a computer should look like, and can recognize irregularities. This is why they need an unobstructed view as the item moves through the X-ray machine.”

Your current bag may work, especially if it’s just a protective sleeve. If you’re in the market for a new bag, expect to start seeing ones that claim to meet TSA requirements (TSA is not itself endorsing any bags).

How do you know if yours will pass? There needs to be nothing but bag material above and below the laptop when it’s laying flat in the bag. That means no zippers or clips. Also, no power adapter or other items in a pocket unless it’s to the side of the laptop.

Several of the styles that TSA says will work are sectioned bags that unfold. So, there will still be preparation, along with removing jackets and shoes, to get your stuff ready to be screened. At least you won’t have to remove your laptop from its bag, although you won’t get nearly the number of compliments on your laptop stickers.

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