The Best Belts for Getting through Security Quickly

Don’t sacrifice style, or dignity, to an airport metal detector.

TSA
Going through TSA can be a hassle, but you can save yourself a little grief by wearing a belt you won’t have to remove.Shutterstock

We all know the routine at this point. Put everything metal in the bin or stand with your arms out and your legs parted to be wanded, and more often than not, it’s the metal you forget about that gets you stuck going through the scanner again. Fortunately, your belt doesn’t have to be part of the problem. Here’s how to find a travel belt that won’t annoy gate security.

The Belt Still has a Job

Jasgood belt
Jasgood Nylon Canvas Breathable Military Tactical BeltAmazon

It all starts with the fasteners. Look for sturdy plastic buckles that don’t have any metal parts, particularly nickel and nickel alloys. Nickel is popular for small metal parts because it’s cheap and easy to work with, but it’ll light up anything looking for metal. Similarly, any rivets or other hardware will send you back through the scanner, so make sure all the hardware on your belt is metal-free.

Magnets… How Do They Work?

Jelt X belt
Jelt X Adjustable Elastic BeltAmazon

Don’t think you have to skimp on fun features, either. For example, ceramic-ferrite magnets, which you know better as “those things holding up all that stuff on your fridge” don’t set off metal detectors, so you can get a belt with a magnetic buckle. Especially if you’ll need to change quickly, having features like a quick release, a low-profile magnetic buckle, or even just an eco-friendly fiber used to make the belt can both keep the line moving and give you a little boost.

Strapped with Options

men's belt
Men’s Elastic Stretch BeltAmazon

Nor does style have to go by the wayside. While nobody will mistake a travel belt for your fancier leather pieces, they do come in plenty of colors, styles, and weaves so that you can make a statement beyond “I just want to be comfy on the plane. Pick something that makes you look good, even in the backscatter machine.