Airports handle large numbers of people every day. Their security is very important because they not only protect the airport and country from potentially dangerous events but also reassure the people traveling that they are safe.
The success of airport security results in a significant reduction of any illegal items and dangerous situations. Airport security checks are therefore very strict. Airline passengers are screened by airport security guards using X-ray machines among other electronic devices.
The security checks normally take a while and most of the passengers tend to prepare themselves adequately to ensure that the problems take the least amount of time possible. Some people are even conscious of how they dress since it may affect the amount of time your inspection will take.
Can I wear flip flops through airport security? Even though it is not restricted and you don’t need to take off your flip flops to pass through the airport security, it is not advised. Why?
- Risk of injuring your feet
- Risk of infection
Risk of injuring your feet
Airports are usually crowded places. Almost everyone is rushing with their luggage to catch their flight. Wearing flip flops is not the wisest of things to do in such a situation. Flip flops leave your feet exposed, providing them with little protection. This puts your toes at a very high risk of being stubbed, hit, crunched, and crashed at several points during the journey. The thought of heavy luggage rolling over your toes on several occasions is unimaginably painful. Wearing flip flops is not worth the risk. It is better to wear closed shoes that will cushion the impact of the luggage landing on your feet.
Risk of infection
Even though flip flops have thin soles, you will still be asked to remove them at the checkpoint. Taking off your flip flops means that you will be standing on the airport floor on bare feet. No one wants to walk through the security lane barefoot. The airport floors are dirty and harbor a lot of germs, increasing the chances of your feet getting infections. You never know where people’s shoes have been. Your feet might end up getting infected with fungi such as athlete’s foot that cause your feet to be cracked and itchy. You should have a pair of socks on when going through airport security so that when you are asked to take off your shoes, there is still something between your feet and the airport floor.
Other shoes not recommended to wear through airport security
Shoes such as boots are also not recommended to be worn through airport security checks. Boots have very thick soles which may be used to hide objects. They are therefore viewed suspiciously. Some boots also have metal tips. The metal tips will trigger the metal sensitive detectors. Shoes such as steel heels are also not allowed. This is because the metallic part of the shoes will also trigger the metal detectors. You will then have to go through a secondary security check that takes even more time. You will end up inconveniencing yourself even more.
Shoes that have complex laces and straps such as gladiator sandals are also not recommended to wear through security checks at the airport. You will waste time trying to untie them and your inspection will end up taking more time than intended. You will not only end up wasting your time but also the time of passengers who are waiting to go through the security check after you.
There are several shoe styles other than flip flops that are just as simple, comfortable and offer your feet even more protection. Besides you can wear these shoes with socks, hence you will not have to face the trouble of having to walk through the security check on bare feet. Slip-on shoes are very convenient since you can slide them on and off in record time, helping you finish the inspection faster. Shoes such as tennis shoes, loafers, and sneakers are also convenient.
Pack shoes near the top for easy inspection
If you have flip flops or any other shoes in your carry-on luggage, you should pack them at the top or near the top of the bag. This will make the inspection of your luggage much easier.
Although there are no restrictions of wearing flip flops through airport security, it is not advised. They put your feet at more risk of injury and worse still, infection. Instead, you should consider carrying a pair of disposable slip-on booties with you. You should also carry a paper towel and disposable wet wipes in your carry-on to clean and dry your feet in case you have to go through airport security barefoot. Wearing slip-on shoes will help you get through the airport security check sooner and more comfortably.