How will new security measures at airports affect my travel?

New security measures at airports have been launched for flights leaving and entering the UK. Which flights will be afftected is unknown, so you are advised to leave a good amount of time to pass through security checks. We have looked through the information provided about the new security measures, and have put together a list of questions that you might have about your upcoming travel.

What are the new security measures in place regarding electrical devices in your hand luggage?

All passengers flying into or out of the UK will have to be able to prove electronic and electrical devices in their hand luggage are sufficiently charged to be switched on.

Which gadgets are included?

The main electrical goods which have been flagged up include, but are not limited to your phone, tablet, laptop, Mp3 player, camera, hairdryer, electrical shaver and travel irons. It is important to note however that the general advice applies to anything “with a battery”, so other items such as handheld games consoles and e-readers could also be checked.

What will happen if my electronic device cannot be switched on?

The new security guidelines say passengers with gadgets that cannot be switched on “face not being allowed to bring the device onto the aircraft”. Make sure that you have your charger in your hand luggage, as you may be given the opportunity to try to charge it to prove that it can be switched on. If this is not possible, you would have the option of leaving it behind or not taking the flight.

What happens if I have to leave an electronic device at the airport?

This can really depend on your airline, and it is important that you check with them if you are concerned. Virgin and British Airways have said that they can either keep the devices safe at the airports for collection upon return, or they can forward them on to a postal address, at the airline’s expense.

How will I know if I will be affected?

For obvious security reasons it cannot be released which flights and airports will be affected. It is advised that all passengers charge any electrical items that they wish to take as hand luggage as a precaution.

Do I need to leave more time to get through security?

The advice seems to be very blurred on this subject so far. British Airways has suggested that you may require more time to travel through security, however very few delays have been reported at Heathrow since this has come into force. Our advice would be to leave as much time as would make you feel comfortable. Many flights encourage you to drop your bags off between 3 and 2 hours (check your e-ticket) before departure. We would not advise leaving any less time than this.

How will long will the new security measures be in place?

This is an ongoing precaution, and as such will be extended indefinitely until advised otherwise

Do the previous restrictions on hand luggage still apply?

Normal hand luggage rules are still in place, including restrictions liquids and sharp objects.

For more information please consult the Department for Transport website.

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