Clear Bag Policy

To provide a safer environment for the public and significantly expedite guest entry into the event, the San Diego Margarita Fest will implement a new clear bag policy this year that limits the size and type of bags that may be brought into the event.

The clear bag policy affects the type and size of the bags permitted into the event — not the items (keys, makeup, combs, phones, wallets, and credit cards) that you would normally bring to an event. Guests can still carry these items in their pockets. Guests will also be allowed to openly carry a blanket or jackets into the event, though they will be subject to search. For the fastest way to enter the event we strongly encourage guests to not bring any type of bags, but if you must, outlined below are the specific types of bags that will be allowed inside the event:

  • One bag that is clear plastic, vinyl or PVC and does not exceed 12” by 6” by 12” or
  • A one-gallon clear plastic storage bag (Ziploc bag or similar).
  • In addition to one of the clear bags noted above, guests may also carry in a small clutch bag or purse approximately the size of a hand, with or without a handle or strap.
  • An exception will be made for medically necessary items after proper inspection.

Prohibited bags include, but are not limited to: purses larger than a clutch bag, coolers, briefcases, backpacks, fanny packs, cinch bags, luggage of any kind, oversized seat cushions with pockets or metal structures, computer bags and camera bags or any bag larger than the permissible size.

These measures are designed to promote public safety while encouraging guests to limit the items they bring into the venue to create a more efficient screening and entry process. We ask that all items are visible when entering the venue. The fewer items that are concealed, the quicker the process becomes.

Click here for a PDF flyer.


Why did the San Diego Margarita Fest adopt this policy?
The San Diego Margarita Fest is constantly reviewing event policies and security procedures and ways to make our event safer.

Are other events limiting bags?
Yes. In fact, some venues do not permit any bags. The policy is the same at all NFL venues and similar bag restrictions and entrance procedures are in place at MLB, NBA, NHL and other special event venues.

How does the new policy improve public safety?
There will be a secondary perimeter around the event where security personnel will check for prohibited items or bags being carried toward the event so those situations can be corrected immediately. This establishes a protected buffer area for attendees in queues for event entry. Prohibited bags will be turned away. Any prohibited bag inside the second perimeter will be highly visible and more quickly resolved.

The clear bag is easily and quickly searched and greatly reduces faulty bag searches. It also supports the Department of Homeland Security’s “If You See Something, Say Something” campaign.

How does this make it more convenient for attendees?
This will enable us to move attendees through our security check points much faster. A standard size bag eliminates the need for bag templates to check bag sizes. It will make the event’s job much easier, allowing staff to be more efficient and effective in checking bags that are brought into the event. There will be less time spent standing in lines at the event gates and attendees will enjoy an improved sense of safety. Shorter lines mean fewer hassles.

Do I have to purchase a bag from the event?
No, there are a variety of options, including a clear 12″ by 6″ by 12″ bag with no commercial identification or an inexpensive Ziploc bag that fans can bring from home. In addition, attendees may carry their own small clutches. For attendees though who wish to purchase logo bags, they will be available.

How many bags can each person bring into the event?
One large clear bag – either a one-gallon Ziploc style bag or the 12″ by 6″ by 12″ clear bag – plus a small clutch. The larger clear bag must be a standard 12″ by 6″ by 12″ made of clear PVC vinyl and is easily searched. The one-gallon Ziploc bag is readily available, inexpensive and easily searched. The small clutch allows privacy for small personal items and also is easily searched.

Can attendees carry cameras, binoculars, smart phones or tablets separately from what they put in a clear bag?
Yes. Binoculars or a phone or camera can be carried into the stadium so long as it is not in its own bag. This is not a restriction on items that attendees have been able to bring into the stadium. It is only a restriction on the type of container used to carry items.

Are seat cushions allowed to be carried into the event?
Single layer seat cushions may be carried into the event. Large seat cushions that have pockets, zippers, compartments, or metal structures are not permitted. Clear seat cushions and seat pads without pockets, zippers, compartments, or covers are permitted.

What about bringing blankets in cold weather?
Attendees will be able to bring blankets by tossing them over a shoulder or arm. They can be easily screened carrying a blanket into the event.

What happens if I show up at the gate with a bag that is not permitted?
Attendees carrying bags that do not meet the criteria will be turned away from the event before they reach the gates.

If I have certain items that I need to bring into the event for medical reasons and they won’t fit in the clear bag, what do I do?
Gate Supervisors will allow screening of these bags and medically necessary items.

Are all purses prohibited?
No, we are not banning all bags. Small clutch purses, with or without a handle or strap, are permitted along with either the 12″ by 6″ by 12″ clear tote bag or the one-gallon freezer bag. This should enable you to carry the same items you have in previous years and speed entry into the event for all attendees because it will take less time to screen bags. Shorter lines means fewer hassles. We encourage attendees not to bring any bags, but have created a policy that balances attendee needs with improved public safety and convenience.

Do I have to put everything I’m carrying into the permissible bags?
No. We are limiting only the type of bags carried into the event, not items that you normally bring to an event. Therefore, you can carry in your pockets or jacket keys, makeup, feminine products, comb, phone, wallet, credit cards, etc., if you choose not to put them in a clear bag or clutch. And you can carry a blanket over your arms, and binoculars and/or camera around your neck or in your hands without the case. You can use the clear bag and clutch to carry other items. You will continue to have the flexibility to bring a wide variety of approved items into the event. Every member of your group may carry in a permissible bag. They key is to not conceal items inside carrying cases, extra bags or bulky containers.

If I have special medical equipment I need to have with me at all times, where do I put that?
An exception will be made for medical necessary items after proper inspection at the event entrance gates. Ask for a Gate Supervisor.