Last week a man from Michigan was busted by the Transportation Security Administration trying to smuggle 35 pounds of marijuana onto a flight inside a wrapped present. Now we ALL have to suffer... with the enforcement of a rule that's not new. The TSA's website is currently reminding travelers not to wrap gifts, which, as one man points out on Twitter, is "old news. Happened years ago to a family member who accidentally tried to bring on a box of knives." Grinches! But the TSA blog clarifies that there's some wiggle room here:
Since TSA's inception, we've worked to educate passengers about traveling with wrapped presents. This is nothing new. Wrapped gifts are screened just like any other item. We can see through the paper just like we can see through luggage, but just as we have to open a bag when it requires a search due to an anomaly or an alarm, we have to open wrapped items as well if they alarm or require additional screening.
We want your gift to arrive wrapped just as much as you do. Just know the possibility is there that if the item alarms, we might have to open it to resolve the alarm. We don't enjoy unwrapping presents that aren't for us, but if an anomaly is detected inside, we'll have to unwrap it in order to determine what it is so we can clear it for travel.
So if what you put inside the box is so laughably insignificant nobody would ever notice it, go ahead and wrap that rascal! But don't think you can slip your favorite cucumber past security by simply wrapping some foil around it. Here's the TSA's current list of what's allowed and what's not.