Just like departures, passengers of all flights arriving at McCarran International Airport, domestic or international, are subject to TSA security screening upon their entry to the United States. The same rule applies even if you are connecting domestically or internationally. Security procedures can take a long time, depending on the weather or flight delay. Therefore, plan accordingly and make sure you have enough time to get to your flight if you are connecting flights.
Security procedures are similar to those on departures. Passengers are required to go through a body scanner while their checked-in baggage and electronic devices are scanned separately. It is important to comply with all the requirements of security agents and answer your questions truthfully and honestly when presented to Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents to determine your legal status.
As mentioned above, the McCarran International Airport has two terminals. Terminal 1 is designated for domestic flights; Terminal 3 serves international flights. When arriving at Terminal 3, it is important to hold your place in an appropriate lane designated for US citizens or international travelers.
Arrivals on Terminal 1, just like departures, are on the lower level with ground transportation services in between the two areas.
Arrivals on Terminal 3 are on the lower level of the building with baggage claim carousels, tram stations, and ground transportation services.
After arriving in the United States, passengers are asked to go through additional screening with Customs and Border Protection agents and present customs declaration together with the passport to determine the reason for their stay, as well as immigration status. Remember, holding a US visa does not guarantee your entry to the United States. Therefore, it is important to answer every question by the CBP agents thoroughly.
After security checkpoints and clearing customs, passengers are invited to claim their baggage and head for the exit or meeting points.
Those who are waiting for their loved ones at Terminal 1 are advised that it is not allowed to go beyond the security checkpoints without a ticket. However, it is possible to meet at other locations in non-secure areas. If the party you are meeting has checked-in baggage, it is possible to meet them at an appropriate baggage carrousel. The baggage information display screen lets you know which carousel has been assigned to your flight. McCarran International Airport website also advised area near baggage carrousel eight as an ideal meeting place.
For security reasons, it is not possible to meet passengers at their gates; however, exceptions can be made if you are meeting with a child traveling alone, or a passenger with special needs. In this case, a gate pass can be requested by contacting your airline company in advance.
Above the baggage claim area, on level 2, there is a red Thunderbird Car at the Cannon Aviation Museum, which is also an ideal meeting place.
For those who are meeting passengers of domestic flights or pre-cleared International Flights at Terminal 3 are also advised to head to appropriate baggage carousels, which will be displayed on the information screen. The same rule applies to meetings at the gates as in Terminal 1. However, if you are meeting with someone who needs to go through Customs and Border Protection control, there is an information booth at the east end of Terminal 3 near Customs and Border Protection area, which also can be used as a meeting point.
There are several seating areas located all along Terminal 1 and 3.