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Cleveland Hopkins Institutes New Customs Procedures Today, But Some Travelers Still Want More Change

photo of Denise Harris, Lois & Dale Schuler
Denise Harris (left) and her friends, Dale & Lois Schuler, all live in Medina, but went to Cancun recently and returned on Saturday. They say the need to retrieve and then re-check bags is still a hassle.

Officials say the new customs procedures taking effect today at Cleveland Hopkins Airport are more efficient. But some flyers want additional changes.

Previously, after answering customs and immigration questions about their checked luggage, international passengers arriving at Hopkins had to place their bags back onto a conveyor belt that leads to baggage claim. Until yesterday, passengers would then board a shuttle to baggage claim to retrieve their luggage.

The new process allows passengers to instead go through TSA screening and then walk through the airport to baggage claim to collect their checked luggage.

Jeffrey Schaefer and Christine Block from Lakewood arrived from Cancun on Saturday, and aren’t sure that doing away with the shuttle bus is the only improvement that can be made.

“You take your bags into the next room and they put it on a carousel, which brings it to the carousel in the actual main part of the airport.”

“Craziest thing I’ve ever seen!” adds Block.

The airport has international arrivals from Cancun, some destinations in the Caribbean, and – as of next month – Iceland.

Kabir Bhatia is a senior reporter for Ideastream Public Media's arts & culture team.