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December 17th 2018 | Written By Press Release | Share

GFIA Wants to Make Your Holiday Travel Easier

GFIA Wants to Make Your Holiday Travel Easier

Grand Rapids, Mich. – The Gerald R. Ford International Airport (GFIA) is preparing for a busy holiday travel season and is offering these helpful travel reminders.

Due to increased passenger traffic, parking lot demands will be greater, and airport facilities are expected to be busy. Also, due to current airport construction, along with the busy holiday traffic, lines could be longer than normal. GFIA encourages passengers to arrive at least 90-120 minutes before their flight and check flight information at

In order to expedite the security screening process, passengers should carefully consider the contents of their checked luggage and carry-on bags. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) recommends wearing shoes that are easy to remove, having identification and boarding passes ready to present at security checkpoints, removing all items from pockets, avoiding bedazzled and jeweled clothing, limiting heavy jewelry, and ending all cell phone conversations prior to screening. In addition, remove any personal electronics larger than a cell phone from your carry-on bags.

If passengers are traveling with gifts, do not wrap them with wrapping paper or tape. TSA recommends putting gifts in gift bags or gift boxes instead. Snow globes can be a popular gift during the holidays but they must contain 3.4 liquid ounces or less to comply with the 3-1-1 liquids bag rule. Larger snow globes should be packed in checked baggage or shipped to your destination.

Traveling with food items is okay during the holidays. Removing heavy food items such as cheese and fudge, along with granular and powdered items like sugar, from your carry-on bag, will also greatly speed up security screening. If the food item is a solid (i.e.: ham, turkey, cake, cookies), then it can be packed in a carry-on bag. If the food item is spreadable or pourable, then it must be 3.4 liquid ounces or less to comply with the 3-1-1 liquids bag rule to travel in a carry-on bag. If it is more than 3.4 liquid ounces, it must be packed in a checked bag.

“We are looking forward to another holiday season, which is a busy time of the year. Because of that, it is important for those traveling – especially if you haven’t flown recently – to review TSA’s website,” said GFIA Interim President & CEO Brian Picardat. “Our TSA staff does a wonderful job, and the more prepared travelers are, the smoother the screening experience will be for everyone.”

The TSA encourages passengers to utilize the 3-1-1 rule with liquids, gels and aerosols. Put all liquids in containers with a 3.4 ounce maximum capacity, and place them in a clear, plastic onequart zip-top bag. Each passenger is limited to one quart-sized bag.

Additional 3-1-1 Information:

  • Deodorant: Stick deodorant is not limited to 3.4 ounces or less, but gel or spray deodorant is.
  • Suntan & Sun Block Lotion: Lotions fall under the 3-1-1 procedures mentioned above. As well as the aerosol spray lotions. Sunblock sticks do not fall under this rule.
  • Makeup: Any liquid makeup cosmetics such as eyeliner, nail polish, liquid foundation, etc. should be placed in the baggie. That goes for perfume as well. Powder makeup is fine.
  • Beverages: Wine, liquor, beer, and all of your other favorite beverages are permitted in your checked baggage. You can also bring beverages packaged in 3.4 ounces or less bottles in your carry-on bags in the 3-1-1 baggie.
  • Sporting Goods: Golf clubs, tennis rackets, baseball bats (including the mini slugger bats), cricket bats, lacrosse sticks, bows and arrows, hockey sticks, scuba knives, spear guns, etc. are all prohibited from being carried onto the plane. However, you can have them checked as luggage.

Questions about TSA procedures and upcoming travel can be addressed to the TSA Contact Center at 1-866-289-9673 or @AskTSA on Twitter.

About GFIA

The Gerald R. Ford International Airport (GFIA) is the second busiest airport in Michigan. The Airport served over 2.8 million passengers in 2017 and over 7,000 travelers pass through GFIA each day. The Gerald R. Ford International Airport offers nonstop service to 27 major market destinations with more than 120 daily nonstop flights. The Gerald R. Ford International Airport is managed and operated by the Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority. GFIA generates over $3.1 billion in annual economic output throughout West Michigan, and employs over 2,000 people. For more information on GFIA visit: or follow the airport on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter: @FlyGRFord

Topics: Press Release