Travelers Left Behind $1M in Coins at TSA Checkpoints Last Year

Travelers Left Behind $1M in Coins

Travelers Left Behind $1M in Coins at TSA Checkpoints Last Year

We have all done it. Go through TSA checkpoints, empty our pockets and throw some coins in the bin. While rushing to get to your gate, you might forget some of that money behind. But apparently it happens more than you would think. The Transportation Security Administration has collected almost $1 million last year, mostly in coins left behind at security checkpoints. The money is often used for TSA programs if it is not claimed.

Air travelers left behind more than $926,000 in coins and cash at security checkpoints, based on the “Unclaimed Money at Airports in Fiscal Year 2019” report that was submitted to Congress. TSA’s 2019 grand total included nearly $19,000 in foreign currency as well. The report provides the amount of unclaimed money recovered from each airport and the total amount recovered during FY 2019, as well as an explanation of how unclaimed money is being used for civil aviation security.

Unclaimed money is money that passengers leave behind at airport screening checkpoints. In most cases, this money consists of coins that passengers remove from their pockets while undergoing security screening. It is deposited into a special fund account so that collection and spending of the money can be tracked easily. TSA reported that it had a total of $3.6 million in unclaimed cash from 2019 and prior years as of Sept. 30 last year.

Out of that money, TSA spent about $1 million on training and development, and another $32,000 to print bookmarks promoting the agency’s PreCheck program, which enables an expedited security screening process for air passengers.

Top 10

The following table lists the amount of unclaimed money collected from the 10 hub airports with the largest amounts:

  • JFK John F. Kennedy International Airport $98,110.00
  • SFO San Francisco International Airport $52,668.70
  • MIA Miami International Airport $47,694.03
  • DFW Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport $40,218.19
  • MCO Orlando International Airport $37,760.89
  • ORD O’Hare International Airport $35,398.93
  • LAX Los Angeles International Airport $32,693.30
  • BOS Logan International Airport $29,259.13
  • EWR Newark International Airport $29,121.84
  • IAH George Bush Intercontinental Airport $27,173.45

You can read the full report here.

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