You know the drill.
You place your purse or wallet into the gray bin before walking through the security checkpoint. Once cleared, you scoop them out of the bin and continue on to your gate.
But according to the Transportation Security Administration, we aren’t scooping everything up. We’re leaving behind our money.
A report released this week by the TSA revealed travelers at airports nationwide left $674,841.06 in spare change on the table — er, conveyor belt last year. Travelers at Logan Airport ranked 13th in a list of the top 20 airports that raked in the most dough this way. The abandoned pennies, nickels, and quarters of Logan travelers added up to $13,513.50 last year.
“TSA makes every effort to reunite passengers with items left at the checkpoint,” said TSA press secretary Ross Feinstein in a statement. “However, there are instances where loose change or other items are left behind and unclaimed. Unclaimed money, typically consisting of loose coins passengers remove from their pockets, is documented and turned into the TSA financial offiice.”
What happens to the money? According to Feinstein, Congress gave the TSA the authority in 2005 to spend the forgotten money on airport security operations. And the security windfall has nearly doubled in the past seven years — up from a total of $383, 413.79 collected by the TSA in 2008.
The airport that made the most in forgotten cash last year? John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, with $42,550 in unclaimed change.
Hey New York, this is one ranking we’re happy to lose to you.