Travel expert explains why you don’t want to see ‘SSSS’ on your boarding pass

A travel expert on TikTok has revealed the meaning behind the quadruple S stamp you sometimes see on your boarding pass — and it’s not a good sign on your ticket

Michelle says the “Quadruple S” seal means you will be thoroughly inspected

If you’ve been on a flight before, you’ve probably looked at your boarding pass and wondered what some of the symbols printed on your ticket mean.

One of the symbols you might find is the “SSSS” stamp, and Michelle, travel expert and TikTok user, @laxtoluxury, says that you’d never want to see on your boarding pass.

That’s because the “SSSS” seal is an indication that you’ve chosen to do a thorough search – and it’s not a pleasant experience.

Michelle explained in a video: “This is something you never want to see on your boarding pass: Quadruple S.

“It means secondary security screening identification, meaning that it will be searched again with very high accuracy, usually found on international flights to the United States.”

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The ‘SSSS’ stamp should be random, but some people may find themselves being picked up to search multiple times if something is flagged as suspicious in your information.

But Michelle – who is based in Los Angeles – says there are steps you can take to try to stop yourself from searching frequently.

In another video, she explained, “If you get the quad S number on your boarding pass a lot, here’s a trick that can help solve that problem.

The woman said the seal indicates the choice of secondary security screening


In another video, I explained what to do if you get the stamp frequently


“If you go to the US Department of Homeland Security’s website, you can apply for a compensation number that requires the Department of Homeland Security to review your record and point out any false or strange information that could lead to additional security measures.

“Once they’ve investigated your records and hopefully you’ll be cleared, you’ll want to enter your reimbursement number on all of your flight reservations from now on, and hopefully you’ll be fine.”

Michelle pointed out in the comments that the trick only works for people who frequently get the mark on their boarding pass.

She said, “By the way, if you only got it once or very rarely, you could have been picked at random. This is for people who get it frequently (so it’s not random!)”

People in the comments expressed their gratitude for the help, with several people admitting to having been repeatedly hit with the Quad Seal S.

One person said, “Thank you for that info! I always say to the person I’m traveling with, ‘Watch this one that will be searched randomly.’ It never fails.”

While another wrote: “I had SSSS once and only had to do one extra safety line. I gave my friend fluids so I didn’t have to worry if I packed it right.”

A third commented: “Thanks! I went to Turkey for a month and have had this since.”

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