TSA officials offer travel tips amid busy holiday season

Record number of guns collected at OIA this year, officials say

By Brianna Volz - Web producer

ORLANDO, Fla. - Officials with the Transportation Security Administration will provide travel tips at Orlando International Airport Friday amid the busy holiday season.

The tips will focus on what travelers should and shouldn't have in their carry-on and checked bags, as well as ways to make the process run faster and smoother while making their ways through airports.

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Officials will hold a press conference at 10:30 a.m., just ahead of the holiday weekend.

The conference also comes after TSA announced that a record number of guns had been collected at OIA this year.

"Travelers are reminded that they might be heading to jail rather than to their desired destination if they don't focus on what is inside their carry-on bags," TSA spokesperson Sari Koshetz said. "So far this year we have stopped 89 guns at Orlando International.  That is more than last year and we are still in the busy holiday season. The escalation is not only troubling but dangerous as most of the guns have been loaded." 

Travelers are encouraged to leave their guns at home, as they could face a fine of up to $13,000 and possible arrest, TSA officials said.

In addition to the 89 guns collected at the airport, officials said they have also seen an issue with travelers voluntarily abandoning luggage that contains prohibited items, such as knives, brass knuckles and various hazardous materials.

TSA agents are asking travelers to arrive prepared, as it slows down the line each time they have to open a carry-on bag because someone packed a prohibited item.

Electronics bigger than a cellphone must be removed from travelers' bags and put in a bin at security checkpoints, unless travelers are a part of the TSA Pre-check program, but even those travelers could be subject to additional screening, officials said.

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