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Costco Saves the Day

If you’re ever flagged as a security risk in an airport I suggest flashing your Costco card. 

Yes, a Costco card. 

This morning trying to get out of the Dulles airport I was stopped and questioned for nearly an hour for having a Utah temporary drivers license, that was paper. PAPER, that I could use to paper cut someone to death.  After showing a school ID, a credit card it was my Costco card that convinced them I was indeed Sarah Nielson.  Really all they should have done was given me a sarcasm test.  I would have passed that with flying colors.

I’m in the Chicago airport waiting for my flight to SLC.  I only hope no one pisses me off between now and then.  I hear those paper cuts are a bitch to recover from.


  • I’ll never fly without it again ;)

  • Holy shit! That means Costco has better security screening than the DMV!

    Now what does that say about good old fashioned American bureaucracies? Hmm…

  • You got screwed. A government ID is NOT required by law to fly. Airlines require it, but it is not a federal law. Any ID should have gotten you on the plane, and by questioning you for an hour and holding you up, they violated your civil rights.

    Your Utah temp license is a valid ID, lawful in any state. You got played.

  • Hm, this makes me think Costco is using our national security as a big promotional tool. Oh well, at least that makes it good for something.

  • I have an Egyptian professor who is an internationally recognized expert in political violence and terrorism. I wonder how often he gets sent to “random” secondary screening?

  • Sovknight’s right on that point, although you’d probably would have had to push hard up the chain of command to get someone with any intelligence and authority. (I flew on my UT paper temp license to San Diego in ’05 without problem, at either SLC or SD. Apparently, I appear less threatening.)

    If your license doesn’t cut them, use my business card to lacerate their carotid arteries, tell them you’ll sue them under 42 USC 1983, and seek damages for their arterial blood that splattered your shoes.

    From my extensive experience, Texans in perceived positions of authority are dicks. You should have complimented him (presuming it was a guy) on his dinner-plate sized belt buckle and he would have swooned.

  • Does El Viagra know that Dulles Airport is in the Washington metro area…and not Texas?

  • I think they will actually let you through without ID, so I don’t see why they make such a fuss about a temp DL. Besides, those goddamned TSA nazis ought to make it their business to know what each state’s temp DL’s look like, since they aren’t unheard of. And really, what’s the point of having a temp if they don’t pass anyway. Fucked up system.

  • Before my next trip I’m opening a Costco membership!

  • So if we don’t hear from you,
    we’ll look for you in America’s Most Wanted – the Paper Cut Princess!

  • Silly Barbara, Dulles lies squarely in Texas. Perchance you are thinking of Dallas, DC’s metropolitan paradise. But let not such trifling mistakes addle your weary brow m’lady :-)

  • God, you must have smiled pretty for your Costco picture. I look like the inbreds in “Deliverance.” It’d ruin my day if that card got me onto a plane.

  • Nothing says “American” like a Costco card. Except possibly a willingness to trample people to death for a vacuum. Glad you didn’t resort to violence.

  • what is it with you and temporary drivers licenses? Since I have known you you always seem to be without a perm license, with a UT ID or with a temporary…

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