With the holiday season upon us, I thought I would re-run this particular blog post. Unfortunately, I'm also dealing with a little writer's block. Being able to re-run my most popular blog posts is pretty freaking handy!
In any event, I wish you and your sex toys safe travels!
I have to admit that I never really gave this matter much thought in the past. That was, however, before I began travelling to other cities for my various sexuality workshops.
As a sexuality speaker, it is wonderful to be able to present at retail stores like Good Vibrations, Camouflage, or Early to Bed because they have an entire store filled with some of my most favorite sex toys. That means that I can leave the majority of my sex toy demo collection at home and not have to bother with TSA or airport security.
One of my most popular and requested topics is my "Art of Oral Sex" workshop which is also known as "Fellatio, Fellatio, Fellatio!" I have invested close to $1k in demo toys that include a variety of silicone dildos from Tantus, Inc and a medical "male genital model". I also bring a variety of flavored condoms that participants can use if they aren't 100% confident their toy has been sterilized to their satisfaction. As someone who has some definite OCD tendencies, I totally get this.
What usually ends up happening is my suitcase ends up being 1/2 full with sex toys since I bring about 25 demo dildos for my fellatio workshops.
So how do I handle travelling with so many sex toys?
For me, I have found that I can more easily relax if I bring my sex toys inside my carry on baggage. Plus, I also know that I've made a huge personal investment in my work supplies and am not confident that the TSA handlers will not take, molest, or otherwise handle my sex toys if it is checked. For me, the peace of mind of knowing I'm in possession of my work supplies is well worth having to go through the TSA screening.
So what's my secret?
As my bag is being put on the xray machine, I will usually openly declare that I am a sex educator and am travelling with multiple sex toys. No, I don't just blurt it out Tourettes- style either. I will tell the bag screen-er what my luggage contains after I've been waved through and am waiting for my bag to come out on the conveyor belt. There probably isn't a need for me to be so open with the TSA agents, but I find that it makes the whole process run more smoothly.
There have also been times when the screen-er re-screens my bag multiple times because some of my sex toys are differently shaped. Once I figure out what they are doing, I will often say "yeah, it sure is a funny looking sex toy, right?" I will then offer to open my bag so they can inspect it further, but I have never had anyone take me up on my offer.
I've also found that it is much easier for me to take out individual sex toys if they happen to be something that could remotely be seen as any type of weapon. I will pack my bag so they are really easy to access (and I place them separately in those quart size Ziploc bags...see, I told you I have OCD tendencies), and I use this policy when I am carrying metal dildos from njoy or other large glass dildos. In all honesty, I can see how someone could see these as potential weapons and I like to put things out in the open so I don't have to be personally frisked or questioned about my travels. Further, some of my sex toys are really fricken expensive as they are either custom to me or "one of a kind". One of a kind sex toys? Yep! This is almost always true for my glass dildos.
(my gorgeous diletto from Steele Malone)
Sometimes the TSA people tell me that there was no need for me to take out my toys to be screened, but I have absolutely no shame about doing it, and sometimes feel like I've made their day a little more fun after I've left the screening area.
I guess I've learned that I am one of those people who tends to be pretty transparent. It works for me in much of my life but can also be hugely problematic for me in other areas (but that is a whole other blog post).
If you are someone who blushes or becomes flustered easily when it comes to sex toys then checking your bag is probably the best way for you to go. However, if you are travelling with sex toys for any type of work related function, then you might want to think about carrying them on. If someone has booked and paid for me to be a presenter, then there is no way I am letting my luggage out of my sight.
So there you have it friends. I've found that this particular game plan works well for me. I've also asked multiple TSA agents if there is a special "code word" for sex toys that I can use, but have been told by the agents that no such word exists. I have also been assured that the TSA agents are well trained in the nuances of screening sex toys. Now, I'm not totally sure that this is the case, but I absolutely believe they think it is the truth so who am I to argue with them, right?