Travel Tip of the Day: Take Your Business Cards Out at Security

Business card

Business card

Take Your Business Cards Out at Security
If you’re a business traveler and you travel with hundreds of business cards going to and from tradeshows, make sure you take them out at airport security screening points and put them in a separate bin, just as you do with your laptop. If you don’t, I can pretty much guarantee that the security agents will flag them and search your whole bag—which will take a lot longer (especially at LHR) than just taking them out to begin with.



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About the Author

Johnny Jet
I used to be afraid to fly and at times even leave the house! I conquered my fear (long story) and now I travel to 20+ countries a year sharing my firsthand knowledge, tips and deals with friends, family and readers. Please sign up to our free newsletters and tell your friends!

20 Comments on "Travel Tip of the Day: Take Your Business Cards Out at Security"

  1. Why do they search the bag if not taken out. Mine are paper.

    • Mine are paper too but since there are so many it shows up as something suspicious. Happened to me both times I tried (once in Toronto and once in New York)

  2. Hey folks, sorry, I don’t understand. Why would one need to take out business cards? I think I have missed the point with this daily tip.

  3. This is the first time I haven’t understood the Travel Tip. I don’t understand what is suspicious about business cards. I carry a lot in my purse…what is weird about them that I’m not seeing?

    • Sorry — maybe I wasn’t clear. Both times I’ve traveled with a small box (1,000 cards) that are all packed tightly together I’ve gotten flagged because it shows up as an unknown object in the machine. Now I just take them out like it’s a laptop and haven’t had a problem.

  4. Never had any problem with business cards and I always have hundreds. I even fly with refrigerator magnets which are denser and only had them checked once. That time they just wanted to see what the dense block in my roll on was. No complete search.

  5. Never would have thunk this one. Must be tough for a multi business consultant.

  6. I’ve never had that happen and I travel with a lot of business cards to conferences…so bizarre! you should try to get an official response as to why airport security might flag this.

  7. I have traveled for years back and forth across the border from Canada and always have a bundle of business cards with an elastic around them and never have I had an issue.

  8. Hmmm, interesting. I have traveled with dozens and have not been flagged. I guess there is a magic number where it triggers a flag?

  9. Wow. Are you carrying them in the rectangular box they are delivered to you in? Maybe that dense little box crammed with business cards reads as a solid unidentifiable mass. I can’t thing of what suspicious thing that shape is like – an ammunition clip? A block of C4? LOL I don’t even know what that is. I googled it = a plastic explosive. I watch too much tv. This is a new one on me.

  10. Yep. I was flagged for my dense mass of business cards. Actually wrote about it back in July.

  11. Paper business card… so nineties…

  12. It’s true. I had it happen with a box of promotional cards – even worse because they had that little foil scratch off. I’m sure that looked innocent to the scanner! ;)

  13. We had a friend that had their luggage searched bringing in a brick of coffee

  14. Agents at HOU tried to open the crematory container of my dad’s ashes, before I stopped them. It was clearly labeled. No words.

  15. I just got flagged going thru TSA pre-check security line at SFO for my box of 1000 business cards. Googled it and found this article!

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