Traveling with twins, especially infant twins or twinfants as they are sometimes called, can be a logistical challenge. A friend calls it a choose your own adventure. Do you a) attempt to wear the babies through security hoping that a TSA agent doesn’t make you unwrap what is sure to be a sleeping infant when you get to the X-ray machine or do you b) attempt what is sure to be a nightmarish experience with a double stroller, babies and baby accessories through security. Choose wisely my friend because there is little as difficult as trying to get through airport security with twins as other passengers are admiring them, glaring at you or trying to cut you off and your flight is boarding.
We lost our twin airport security virginity when the girls were 9 weeks old. I read suggestion after suggestion from other twin parents and finally decided that we would go the stroller route – I couldn’t cut the cord from the stroller. As we approached airport security I felt as though we were the opening scene for a new reality TV show: Survivor: Twinfants. Between the oohs and ahhs we got from vacationers to the icy stares we got from weary business travelers I dreaded the inevitable snaking line leading up to security.
As we walked up to the line we were waved into the VIP, more miles than you can ever dream of and crew security line. HURRAY! It turns out that taking the double wide stroller means that TSA doesn’t want you standing in line with everyone else either.
IDs and boarding passes checked, we were politely assisted by a TSA agent who gave us the 4-1-1 on how we could most efficiently travel through the Xray process.
1. Shoes and toiletries first (duh)
2. All car seats must go through the Xray, so wake that sleeping baby up and wrap them to your chest. We went through the machine with ergo baby carriers with no problem. Turn the car seats upside down through the Xray machine, there is less to get caught on the machine.
3. Send the stroller through, if possible. Double wides usually don’t fit, but front/back strollers do. Sending the stroller through the machine is must faster than waiting to be wanded.
4. Let TSA know if you are sending through breastmilk/formula. You may take more than 3 oz through, but our experience with how it is tested/verified varied greatly. Some places put the milk containers in a tester, others poured out a small bit to test, others didn’t seem to bother even looking at it (maybe they felt bad for us!)
Special Notes: If you carry a baby through the Xray machine, your hands will need to be tested. When your twins are walking, walk them through right in front of you – then no one needs to be tested.
After almost a year and a half, our kids are true frequent fliers and we often get through security faster than families with one baby or even older kids. It’s all about being prepared and practicing!