When shopping around for the best TSA-approved locks, personal preference comes largely into play. You ideally should go with a style of lock that you can confidently maneuver, even when you're rushing to get to your destination and feeling scattered. But first, it helps to have a little background about how these locks work.
What is a TSA-approved lock?
TSA-approved locks feature a special keyhole that allows Transportation Security Administration (aka TSA) officials access during baggage checks with the help of a universal key they possess. These TSA-friendly keyholes are separate from the component that you'll use yourself to lock and unlock them. You can distinguish TSA-approved locks from other types because they will have the red Travel Sentry logo (which looks like a four-part diamond).
How to choose the right type of lock
When selecting a lock, think about your personal preferences. If you're historically not great at remembering combination codes, you're probably better off with a key lock. On the other hand, if you're more worried about having to keep track of a key, a combination lock is the way to go.
Another consideration to think about is the size of the lock's shackles. They need to be thin enough so that they can slide into the zipper holes on your suitcase or backpack. Some locks feature flexible cables, which can help if you have non-traditional zippers.
Below, I've made a list of the best TSA-approved locks in a variety of styles. Take a look to find the one that fits you best.
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