This is the secret code that lets you get your engagement ring through airport security

This is the secret code that lets you get your engagement ring through airport security

A lot of people plan elaborate proposals. It's a special moment, and you want it to be perfect. At just the right time, in just the right location, you'll pull out that shiny diamond ring that cost three months salary, and "Hey, I'm willing to settle for you. Are you willing to settle for me?" Or "I love you so much, will you marry me?" Whatever. Your choice.

It would suck if the surprise was spoiled, and going through airport security must be really nerve-wracking. Imagine if you planned to propose to your partner at an exotic location, like Hawaii, Thailand or Detroit, but it was totally ruined at the airport. At security, your partner could spot the ring in the plastic trays before you have a chance to hide it. Or the security guards might spot ring in your carry-on through the X-ray, and pull it out of your bag, for further examination. There goes your perfect moment.

However, East Midlands Airport in the United Kingdom came up a solution. They've launched a service to help anyone with engagement rings sneak past security. All you have to do is contact the airport before your trip, and tell them about your situation. They'll give you a secret code, and then when you arrive at the airport, you tell a member on the security staff your secret code. They'll take you a separate lane from future fiancee, so your partner is never alerted about your plans.

"It would put a big damper on someone’s meticulously planned romantic trip if their big surprise was revealed even before they’ve boarded the plane," said Matthew Quinney, head of security for East Midlands Airport. "Arguably, there are more romantic places to be proposed to than in our security hall." Also, what if your partner says no, and then you're sitting right next to them for the whole plane flight? That would be pretty miserable.

They don't say what the secret code could be. Is it a number, like "42"? Is it a random word, like "cheesecake"? Is it an unusual phrase, like "Do you like sharks?" or "Do they still make Mello Yello"? I guess we won't know until we fall in love and plan a vacay in Leicestershire, England.

While this is a cute story, I have two questions about this service. One, won't your partner notice when you whisper something to security, and get taken to a separate lane? If they're aware of this service, they'll immediately know that you have a ring with you and you're going to propose, so the surprise is spoiled. And two, why can't everyone with engagement rings just check a bag, and put the ring in that bag? When you check a bag, you can put almost anything in it. Nobody publicly goes through it. If you can afford to buy a diamond engagement ring, you can afford to pay check a bag.  Just don't put the ring in your carry-on bag, people.

Anyway, if you want to arrange this service, email If I ever visit this airport, I might pretend like I'm proposing, just to get through security faster.