Flying soon? Make sure that after you empty your pockets, you keep track of your belongings. Recent reports show that the Transportation Security Administration found nearly $1 million in loose change last year after passengers left it in the bins and bowls that run through the security machines.
Do your pockets feel a little lighter after going through security at the airport? It’s possible you left some change behind in the bins and buckets endlessly running through the machines. In 2018, the Transportation Security Administration collected nearly $1 million in loose change from security lines.
The amount collected annually has steadily been rising. In 2014, it was about $675,000; in 2015, it was $766,000; and last year, it was $ $960,105, Vox reported.
“There is no real way for TSA to know why this happens,” TSA spokesperson Lisa Farbstein told CNBC. “It makes sense to point to an increase in the number of travelers as one likely reason, but other than that, we have no theories.”
All that extra money people have left over the years has a destination, though. Congress passed a law in 2005 saying the TSA can spend it on a civil aviation security project of its choosing—so it all gets logged and put into a bank account. In the past, the money has been used to expand TSA Pre-Check services and to translate security signs into other languages.
The largest airports aptly tend to collect the most money each year. In 2017, JFK in New York collected $72,392. LAX pulled in $71,748, and Miami bankrolled $50,504.
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