Saturday, August 12, 2006

No Liquids Beyond Airport Security Checkpoints -- The Confiscated Items Should be donated

I was on a short vacation trip -- . I packed all my clothes and stuff in one carry-on luggage. I flew home Saturday morning, and was glad that I got at the airport 2.5 hours before my flight time. After I got at the airport and checked in at a kiosk, the lines at the security checkpoint were long. Very long. Luckily, I had my bagel and drink to eat while waiting.

Some people in line told me that their friends had to give up their unopened wines, as well as the common household goods: toothpaste, shaving cream, perfume, colgne, shampoos, lotions, body washes. You name it; anything liquid was not allowed on you or in your carry-on luggage after the news broke out on Thursday August 10th of several people were arrested in Britain airport carrying weapons in these household goods. Frightening, but relieved on their security. It made me think; I wonder if the US airport security firm wouldve picked it up? In any case, since i'm into savingeverything, where should all the confiscated household goods, liquids and bottle wines go? It disturbed me to see that it was placed in large dumpster bins, along with normal trash found at airports. Are they going to throw it all away? Are the TSA security people going to save the wine bottles as their own personal gift after their shifts? In my opinion, the airports should donate these goods to the local charities -- of course, after making sure it's safe. I'm sure alot of poor people who would really appreciate these items; it's a waste for all these items to go to waste! There were unopened soda and water bottles, moisturizers, shampoos, wines, and other alcohols (mainly from international flights with tax free duties.) Hmmm. I guess all the sales at the duty-free airport stores (for international flights only) will be dried up. No more buying duty-free alcohol from international flights! Darn! Sometimes you can get really good deals on the alcohols. No more. No more sales for them. Oh well, maybe that's a good thing that you cant bring alcohol liquids in your carry-ons.

Either way, I felt bad that lots of things were being thrown away. And, these large dumpster bins in the airport checkpoint were used for all the banned items on airplanes, along with regular airport waste. That's aweful. It means that all of these items, whether they were opened or unopened, will just sit wastefully at a nearby landfill. Unless, all the airport staff will go throught the stuff and take whatever they want at the end of their shifts. Do you think they will do that? Probably not. But, if they confiscated unopened alcohols (wines), maybe. It's sad. I'm sure many poor people are hoping that they can get their hands on these items. I think all of these items should be donated to local charity programs or city human services departments. All safe items should be given to the local charities; and they will greatly appreciate receiving all the shaving creams, shampoos, moisturizers, perfumes, colgnes, lotions, contact eye solutions, toothpastes, bottled waters and juices and sodas; everything--you name it. While it would frustrate us travelers, it would be a nice gesture to realize that it would help others. It is more irritating to see it go to waste and literally in the waste bins, then to see it be given to poor people.

I also took a loss at the checkpoint. I donated my remnants of my liquid stuff to some stranger on the street before I got in the car service to the airport. But, here is the rest of the stuff that the airport security took from my carry-on luggage: deodorant (it was a small size that I received as a free trial sample), the tiny toothpaste tube (which my dentist gave at my cleaning), body lotion and shampoo (which I took from the hotel), another hotel shampoo I mustv'e had in one of the pockets of my bag that i was unaware of. They asked me to throw away the bottled juice that I was almost finished with. At first I was like "You gotta be kiding me. We both can see what's in it and my receipt was in my hand with my boarding pass." But, I took a last gulp of it and threw the rest in the trash bin. I think i was the only one that probably didnt lose too much. The lady behind me lost her perfume, lipstick, deodorant, and a tiny toothpaste like mine. She was really friendly and we talked some more as we departed to our gates. I told her about how all this stuff should be donated instead of thrown away. She said that's a good idea, but was annoyed that her stuff was taken away.

OO. Another idea. Maybe I will just hang out at the airport and periodically go through the bins to take unopened items, bag it, and take it to my car. Hmm? Actually, the short-term parking rates doesnt pay to do this. But, if in the city and the airport is accessed through public transportation, then I'd make several trips with large trash bags in hopes to find wines and many expensive perfumes, colognes, and other items for my personal keeps. Would I be asked to leaev?

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