Nearly every rom-com of the early ‘90s has that airport scene where the lead rushes past security to stop their true love from flying away forever. For years that moment has only been a reality in movies, but that is starting to change as more airports are relaxing their security.

Airports around the country are beginning to change their policies to allow non-ticketed visitors through security. Tampa International Airport just announced that it will join two other major airports, Pittsburgh International Airport and Seattle Tacoma, in allowing visitors to pass through airport security even if they won’t be boarding an airplane.

“Now families, foodies or even couples looking for a unique date experience can come try our chargrilled oysters at Ulele, sample locally brewed beer at Cigar City and shop for unique gifts and items at our duty-free and fine retail stores without having to buy a ticket,” the airport’s CEO, Joe Lopano, said in a statement.

Of course there are still safety restrictions in place. Visitors wishing to enter the terminal must register online at least 24 hours in advance. If approved, they are able to visit any time from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., after passing through security with a valid photo ID. Currently the All Access program is only available on Saturdays, but if it’s successful the airport plans to expand it to additional days.

—Shahrzad Warkentin

Featured photo: Rawpixel



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