Preoccupied or hurried travelers are leaving hundreds of dollars in trays at Maine airport security checkpoints, according to recent data released by the federal Transportation Security Administration.
The six primary Maine airports had a total of $768.11 in unclaimed money in fiscal year 2019, with the Portland Jetport having the most at $700.22 followed by Bangor International at $66.39, according to the TSA’s regional spokesperson Daniel Velez. Augusta, Bar Harbor, Presque Isle and Knox County airports each had only a small amount left behind. The money was collected between Oct. 1, 2018 and Sept. 30, 2019.
Forgetting wallets or loose change at checkpoints is a national phenomenon. The TSA collected $926,030 from all U.S. airports during that time period, according to its annual report on unclaimed money. That’s down from the $960,105 collected the year before.
The Maine airport numbers are included in the $36,182 collected from New England airports, with Boston-Logan ranking 9th nationally in money collected.
Any money that remains unclaimed goes to the TSA, which uses it for training and development. The TSA encourages travelers to put their wallet and loose change in a carry-on bag before going through security.