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“The Envelope Please”
Airport Security Just Got Better!

There had to be a better way! You arrived early at the airport, waited on long lines and checked your bags. You then proceeded to security, were x-rayed and wanded (maybe even removed your shoes), only to be informed that you are in possession of an item on the prohibited list (Swiss Army knife, scissors). And now it’s too late to put it in your checked-in luggage. Millions of Americans have had this experience.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has reported that over 10 million items have been confiscated from the traveling public since 9/11. Until now, you had little choice but to “contribute to the security of America” by turning over your personal belongings and watch as they were tossed in a bin with hundreds of other confiscated items. It doesn’t have to happen any longer!

There is a better way and the better way is MailBack, “the airport envelope”, a “personal property return system.”

MailBack is a pre-packaged, pre-stamped, bubble lined envelope. Made of DuPont™ Tyvek® brand protective material. Also included is “point safe”, a patent pending sheath designed to protect sharp points from piercing the envelope from the inside, plus a pen to address it on the spot.
(It’s easy) Buy it – Address It - Mail It. And BAM,

When dropped in a mail box, MailBack containing your property will travel
first-class through the U.S. Postal Service (to any United States destination), whether it catches up to you at your final destination or back to your home.

Alan Kaufman, President of Self Defenses, the company that spearheaded and produces MailBack commented, “As we ensure national security and public safety, we no longer have to compromise the rights of individuals and their property.

Tests of MailBack, at various airports, have already proven to be very successful, with acceptance by the public, TSA and airline agents. This cooperative solution to confiscation is a win-win-win situation.

MailBack is made in the USA, and will be sold at airport retailers and airline ticket counters close to security checkpoints. From $4.95 to $6.95. Available now at Hudson News, the transportation retail specialists. And everywhere on or before the Fourth of July.

So if you should find yourself in this predicament, just ask for “The Envelope Please”.


open source | industry gossip
MARCH 30, 2004


Vol. 13, Ed. 14 April 8 - April 14 2004

About face at the security gate

Flashlight shuns cell phones, but is quite fond of gadgets such as multi-tools, pocket knifes and, of course, nice sturdy flashlights. None of which we consider weapons, but all of which could be seen as potential threats by security guards and cops. It doesn't help that we've been known to do a quick 180-degree turn when confronted by an airport metal detector. But what's an absent-minded person to do when he suddenly realizes he is packing a Swiss Army knife and has a flight to catch?

The answer, thankfully, is no further away than the airport gift shop. The entrepreneurs at the online catalogue Self Defenses have created a pre-packaged mailer, called “Mailback,” that you can use to ship home your knife, toe clippers and anything else that might raise a red flag at airport security. The envelope is lined with bubble wrap and comes with a pen and pre-paid postage. At Anchorage's international airport, it sells for $6.99 at Hudson News and Gifts.

Store manager Roger Slee says it's been available since December and is a big seller. Slee was working for the same company at Portland International Airport in September 2001. Hundreds of customers needed mailers after the 9/11 attacks, but there was no service available. Slee says he was purchasing envelopes to keep his airport shop in stock. “Of course, half the time I was out because I have other things to do besides run around rounding up envelopes,” he says.

Slee has learned a few things about travelers. Women, for instance, are more likely to mail scissors home than men. The men are more likely to have “one of those Swiss Army knives that do 10,000 things,” he says.

Incidentally, Self Defenses also offers a huge selection of flashlights, pepper sprays, and multi-tools - most of which aren't allowed on airplanes and might one day end up in the envelope they sell. The company also offers a discount to customers who say their knife was seized by airport security. It's called the “replacement knife discount” and it can only be used four times per household.



Posted on Fri, Apr. 23, 2004
Travelers Save Items by Mailing Them Home

Associated Press

WASHINGTON - Travelers who realize they're carrying a treasured pocketknife or grandma's scissors after arriving at the airport may now have a more convenient way to save the items.

Newsstands in several airports are now carrying special envelopes - including postage - designed to allow people to mail their scissors, pocket knife, multi-tool or other item to themselves.

Called MailBack, the envelopes are sold at several Hudson News stands and the manufacturer is planning to expand sales through several news chains in airports.

Alan Kaufman of Self Defenses Inc., in New York said he got the idea after hearing customers lamenting the loss of items they inadvertently carried into airports and had to give up under new security rules.

Since the hijackings of Sept. 11, 2001, airport security has banned travelers from carrying many knives, tools and other sharp items that previously had been allowed. Federal screeners have confiscated nearly 6 million of these items.

Yolanda Clark of the Transportation Security Administration said travelers who find themselves at the airport with a banned item they don't want to give up have three options: they can put it in their checked baggage, they can return it to their car or give it to friend or loved one nearby, or mail it back to themselves.

Some airports have post offices where people can buy boxes or envelopes and send items back to themselves.

At other places that convenience isn't available, Kaufman said his product, selling for $6.95, makes the mail back option convenient.

The envelopes are made of strong plastic lined with bubble wrap and include a self-sticking guard made of cardboard that can be placed on any sharp points to keep them from piercing the envelope.

The envelope carries three 37-cent stamps, which is enough postage for four ounces, and includes a pen so the buyer can address the envelope and drop it in a mailbox.

Kaufman noted that mailboxes have been removed from some airports and said he is working with the newsstand operators to mail the envelope for the customer.


Airport Security Solution Really Delivers

With all the heightened security at airports, it’s inevitable that someday you’ll have something confiscated at the security gate, whether it’s a Swiss Army knife you forgot to pack in your suitcase or the metal fingernail file in your purse. But a new security product, MailBack, offers an alternative to having your personal items confiscated at the gate. The pre-packaged, pre-stamped bubble envelope containing your property gets sent through the mail to arrive safely at your travel destination or back home.
Millions of items have been confiscated at airport security gates since 9/11, says Self Defenses, the company producing MailBack. And until now, all you could do was watch your personal property be dumped in a bin with everyone else’s, never to be seen again. MailBack – with its DuPont Tyvek brand protective material, “point safe” design to prevent sharp points from piercing the package and pen to address the envelope on the spot – offers a safe and convenient alternative, says the company. Envelopes range from $4.95 to $6.95 and will be sold at airport ticket counters near security check points starting July 4, 2004. (4-13-04)


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