The U.S. Airports With The Longest & Shortest TSA Security Wait Times

If you haven’t been convinced to get TSA Pre-Check yet, chances are you’ve spent quite some time in those long queues that wind back and forth and back and forth at some of the TSA security checkpoints across the country. Granted, some of those queues are longer than others, depending on where you’re flying from. In fact, a website looked at the security wait times of the United States’ 25 busiest airports (as determined by total passengers boarding in 2018) to see which had the longest and shortest waits (and which were somewhere in between). Here’s what they found:

The study used hourly and daily wait times, as per TSA data, during the times of 4am and 11pm (which is when the vast majority of flights depart). It also determined the best times to go through security to have the shortest waits, as well as when the longest waits were.

The 5 Airports With The Shortest Waits At TSA Security:

RANKING NAME #1-25 BUSIEST AVG. WAIT TIME BEST TIMES WORST TIMES
#1 Salt Lake City (SLC) 23 9.1 minutes Wed., 6p-7p Sun 11p-12a
#2 Washington Dulles (IAD) 25 10.5 minutes Tue., Wed. & Thur., 10p-11p Fri 9a-10a
#3 Boston Logan (BOS) 16 10.6 minutes Thur., 10p-11p Fri 5p-6p
#4 Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) 17 13 minutes Sat. 8p-9p Mon 2p-3p
#5 (tie) Charlotte Douglas (CLT) 12 13.2 minutes Wed., 4a – 5a Thur., 5p-6p
#5 (tie) Detroit Metropolitan (DTW) 19 13.2 minutes Tue. & Thur., 10p-11p Sun., 5a-6p

The 5 Airports With The Longest Waits At TSA Security:

RANKING NAME #1-25 BUSIEST AVG. WAIT TIME BEST TIMES WORST TIMES
#1 Newark Liberty (EWR) 11 23.1 minutes Fri., 10p-11p Mon., 12p-1p
#2 George Bush (IAH) 14 19.8 minutes Wed., 5a-6a Sun., 5p-6p
#3 Miami (MIA) 15 19.6 minutes Sun., 10p-11p Thur., 4a-5a
#4 Baltimore-Washington (BWI) 22 18.2 minutes Wed., Thur. & Fri., 10p-11p Mon., 2p-3p
#5 McCarran (LAS) 9 17.3 minutes Tue 6p-7p Sun., 6a-7a

I thought it was interesting that the ranking of how busy an airport was didn’t necessarily correlate with the longest and shortest waits at the TSA checkpoints. Just goes to show you that even though TSA all comes from the same agency, some of their airport crews apparently have it more together than others. Which, honestly, should surprise NO ONE.

Anyway, click here for the report of the original study, along with some other data that they discovered via this study, including how long those waits actually were during the airports’ respective “best” and “worst” times.

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

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