Why Do We Have to Remove Our Shoes During the Airport Security Process?

Photo by Enzo Sartori on Unsplash

We’re the first to admit that the Transportation Security Administration has some very weird rules. One of them surely has to be removing your shoes during the security check.

Forgoing your footwear can be super awkward for a couple of reasons. 

It can take a while to slip out of those sandals, particularly if they have several straps. Doing so can cause a massive hold-up, resulting in everyone looking at you. Talk about pressure.

Another reason that you may dread taking off your sneakers is the state of what’s inside. Did you put on those holey socks this morning? Do your feet smell?

These are all very valid concerns. 

Unfortunately, there is a reason that the TSA is super strict when it comes to security. The administration was created in the aftermath of 9/11 as a way to prevent future terror attacks from occurring. 

Passengers have used shoes to conceal dangerous items like explosives, weapons, and even illegal substances. So you can understand TSA being wary…

But you may be asking why officials can’t just scan shoes like they do everything else when we step through the metal detector. As it turns out, screening that way just isn’t enough. 

Airports also employ advanced imaging technology (AIT) machines, which can detect non-metallic objects such as bombs. 

So next time TSA tells you to unlace, remember it’s in the name of safety.