HomeTravelSix UK airports forced to bring back strict hand luggage rule in...

Six UK airports forced to bring back strict hand luggage rule in just days


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SIX UK airports have been forced to reinstate strict hand luggage rules – despite introducing new scanners.

Holidaymakers travelling through the selected airports were glad to wave goodbye to the 100ml liquids rule.


The new CT scanners will allow passengers to carry liquid items of up to two litres in their hand luggageCredit: Getty

But passengers have now been informed they will have to revert back to the old restrictions.

The Department for Transport (DfT) is reimposing the dreaded liquid limit at the five UK airports where it had been erased in what they describe as a “temporary measure”.

New CT scanners were set to be installed across major UK airports that would allow people to travel with 2litres of liquids.

The high-tech machines create a 3D image of what is inside passengers’ bags.

The advanced technology was welcomed by weary travellers tired of squeezing every essential into tiny bottles.

However, those making their way through security at Leeds Bradford, London City, Aberdeen, Southend, and Teesside airports have been urged to pack light once again.

Despite the improved scanners, holidaymakers will again be limited to 100ml containers in their hand luggage from Sunday.

The 100ml rule was introduced in 2006 following a foiled terror plot to blow up planes flying from London to the US with home-made liquid bombs.

A statement from the Department of Transport read: “From 0001 on Sunday 9th June 2024, 100ml restrictions on liquids will temporarily be reintroduced for passengers travelling from six regional airports where Next Generation Security Checkpoints (NGSC) are in full operation.

“This temporary move is to enable further improvements to be made to the new checkpoint systems and will only affect a small number of passengers. For most passengers, security measures will remain unchanged.

“Passengers should continue to check security requirements with their departure airport before travelling.”

The new tech was supposed to be in place everywhere by June 1 this year.

The ‘100ml’ hand Luggage rule at UK airports explained

Going through airport security can be a stressful experience, so it’s important to be aware of strict hand luggage rules before you travel. Most UK airports will be implementing the following rules:

  • All liquid items packed in a passenger’s hand luggage must be less than 100ml
  • Liquids include items like gels, aerosols, moisturisers, sunscreen and makeup products
  • All liquid items must fit into a 20cm x 20cm sealed plastic bag, before they go through the scanner at airport security
  • Electronic items like laptops and tablets must be removed from bags and placed in a separate tray.

New CT scanners have already been installed at Teesside Airport, London City Airport and Aberdeen Airport, which means holidaymakers will be able to pack two litres of liquid in their hand luggage.

However, London Gatwick, London Stansted, East Midlands and Manchester Airport have now confirmed scanners will not be functional until 2025. 

The scanners were also aimed to reduce queues by allowing passengers to keep their laptops and liquids loose in their hand luggage while going through security.

It comes as Brits travelling from Birmingham Airport were being warned over changes to hand luggage rules.

Last week, Birmingham International Airport became the first major airport in the UK to install a series of new CT scanners.

What you need to know about the new airport 100ml liquid rule

Even though Birmingham International Airport installed the new scanners before the government’s June deadline, the airport has told passengers to only bring liquids of up to 100ml through airport security.

The warning comes following a delay in final regulatory approval.

A statement on the airport’s website reads: “Whilst the change in regulation is to allow liquids up to 2 litres, due to a restriction by the regulator only liquids up to 100ml can currently be carried albeit it can stay in hand luggage and no longer needed to be in plastic bags.”

Passengers travelling from Birmingham International Airport will be able to keep their liquids loose in their hand luggage and they won’t need to be removed from bags at the security area.

The Terminal Operations Director of Birmingham Airport told Travel Gossip: “Whilst the airport is ready with its new security technology, we are awaiting the final approval of the 2L liquid allowance.

“In the meantime, any customers travelling through the airport can take liquids, pastes and gels up to 100ml loose, and no longer in plastic bags, in their hand luggage.

“Additionally, electricals can stay in their bags and do not need to be removed at the security search area.”

The new airport scanners explained

The Sun’s Head of Travel Lisa Minot has explained how the new scanners will change the way Brits travel through UK airports.

She said: “The new generation of CT scanners will be a huge boost to passengers flying out of UK airports.

“Laptops and other electronic devices can stay in your luggage and there’s no need to stick to the current 100ml liquid restriction that has been in place for the last 18 years.

“Eventually, you’ll be able to take up to two litres of liquids without having to remove them from your hand luggage.

“But the scanners are a huge logistical nightmare for airports who have to install the new machines while still processing large numbers of passengers via the old ones.

“Birmingham will be the first major UK airport to switch to the new scanners on June 1 – giving travellers a quicker, less complicated security experience. Teesside and London City airports are already using the new system.

“But it’s worth bearing in mind that not all airports across the globe have the equipment.

“You may well be able to fly out with liquids over 100ml – but if the airport you fly home from doesn’t have them yet you could find yourself coming a cropper.

“While we transition over the next couple of years you’ll need to make sure you’re aware of the arrangements in any airport you fly through.”

Which UK airports have the new scanners?

Last year, the Department of Transport implemented a deadline of June 2024 for airports to have the new scanners in place.

Several small airports in the UK have already had the new scanners installed, including Teesside Airport in County Durham, London City Airport in London and Aberdeen International Airport in Aberdeen.

London Luton Airport and Bristol Airport also aim to introduce the new technology by the June deadline, with the latter said to be investing more than £10million in the new security equipment.

Passengers have now been informed they will have to revert back to the old restrictions


Passengers have now been informed they will have to revert back to the old restrictionsCredit: Alamy

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