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The Editor Speaks: Airport security staff need to be polite

There would seem to be some training needed for our security staff to be POLITE!

I have noticed it too at the airport and now a frequent visitor to our islands has complained on tripadvisor.

This is what the visitor said:

“Airport Security – Super Strict on the Way Out

“27 Aug. 2018, 1:37 pm

“Just a heads up to everyone: I fly regularly and Owen Roberts had the strictest security I’ve experienced. Even after I opened my toiletry bag and left it open for scanning, they took most of the tiny bottles and stuffed them into a plastic bag, even though my bag has mesh dividers. They threw away several bottles that didn’t fit in their plastic bag. They confiscated things no other airport has, including a plastic wine bottle opener – understandable, but US security told me they were fine. They tossed my small tube of sunscreen – it was a 3.5 or 4.0 oz tube but it wasn’t full so it probably wasn’t over the 3 oz limit.

“They were also rude from start to finish. Never experienced such unfriendly treatment in the Caymans. I did my best to stay polite and friendly, but their security people were neither.

“As a regular flyer, I was surprised by this. No need to come at me – I know they were within their rights to confiscate those things. But they were unexpectedly strict and unusually rude.

“If you’re flying out, be super careful. If anything may be a question mark, put it in checked luggage or throw it away before you get to security. Hope this is helpful.”


This rudeness from security is not just here at Owen Roberts Airport. It seems to be everywhere you travel.

The only people who haven’t had a bad airline experience at an airport are the people who don’t fly.

It is not limited to security officers.

Passengers are regularly subjected to rude treatment at nearly every step of their journey. Rude flight attendants. Rude gate agents. Other airport employees. All can sour the experience before anyone gets on the plane.

In the United States the airline industry is one of the lowest rated industries on the American Customer Satisfaction Index.

Jeff Toister writing on the website Toister Solutions nails it in this piece “Why air travel is so unfriendly”.

“When one arrives at any airport it is usually chaos.

“There’s a calamity of cars, taxis, and shuttle busses jockeying for position. People cut each other off at slow speed. Infrequent visitors really clog things up as they block other traffic while trying to figure out where to go.

“What can airports do here? Better traffic control is a solution. The traffic control officers at many airports are typically unfriendly and unassertive. It’s a dangerous combination that leads to continued chaos while these folks sit idly by.

“The next step is the check-in. Savvy travelers skip this part and check-in online or via a smartphone app and then use an electronic boarding pass. Checking a bag is to be avoided at all costs.

“But, there are those of us who attempt to check-in via the kiosk. Here, passengers are often met with long lines full of anxious passengers. They’re also met by airline employees who frequently seem overwhelmed by the stress of it all, or, they’ve long ago numbed themselves to the experience. Trust me, this rubs off on passengers.

“What can be done? One solution is to give these airline employees special training on how to better assist passengers who use those kiosks. This would allow them to be more helpful and allow passengers to feel more confident.

“Getting through security is the next big hassle. TSA has lately come under fire for long lines. This causes stress to skyrocket as passengers worry about making their flight.

“The unfriendly and aggressive attitude displayed by many TSA officers only makes things worse. The typical TSA process involves someone who checks your ID, but steadfastly refuses to smile. Next, you are greeted with an officer who is barking instructions at people as they wait in line. To top it off, there’s the process of taking off your shoes, emptying your pockets, and taking certain items out of your bag, only to reassemble the whole mess once you get through to the other side.

“It’s no wonder that passengers are on edge when they finally clear security. “


Jeff concludes his article with some solutions, one of which is:

“One immediate solution is for TSA officers to rethink their approach to passengers. Bark less. Help more. Seek out the confused travelers and offer some polite guidance while developing a friendly rapport with frequent travelers who don’t need any assistance.”

Here we have a “Cayman Kind” message. It would pay everyone behind this message should note the TripAdvisor complaint and immediately do something to remedy the problem.


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