"You can't be furious in an airport because they'll strip search you and that'll make everyone nauseous," Rivers told Eyewitness News.
Rivers has jokes even after what she calls a very upsetting ordeal, being detained at a Costa Rican airport because the name on her passport was suspicious.
"I'm not ticking," Rivers said. "You know who you're dealing with."
The comedian had been in Costa Rica celebrating the new year with family and friends. In fact, her daughter Melissa had flown home earlier Sunday on another flight.
But when Rivers tried to board a Continental plane to Newark, the gate agent didn't like the look of her passport, which reads: Joan Rosenberg aka Joan Rivers. Rosenberg was her late husband's last name.
"I'm not stupid. I travel a lot. I begged, I asked for help. I asked them to call New York," Rivers said.
But she was not allowed on the plane.
She says she only made it home after a six and a half hour drive to another airport, on another flight the next day.