Making Sense of Airport Luggage Rules

The way we use aeroplanes changed forever on September 11, 2001. Never before had the world seen hijacked planes used as weapons, and security was instantly stepped up across the globe. Five years later, British police foiled plans to use liquids to blow up planes as they crossed the Atlantic to the USA. This added a new dimension to airport security, and although the heightened regulations have been in place for quite a while, many travellers are still confused about what to expect at airport security.

Security Doors

Passing through an airport security door is something which every flyer has to do. Different airports have different policies, but in many places you will be asked to remove your belt, heavy shoes and items of loose jewellery such as necklaces and watches. If you set off the alarm as you pass through the door, you will be patted down by an officer to make sure you aren’t concealing anything under your clothing. If travelling with children, they will be expected to walk through the door on their own if they are old enough. Speed up the process for everyone by removing shoes, belts and other items before you get to the security door rather than waiting until the last minute.


Rules about liquids cause the most confusion. You are not allowed to take containers of more than 100ml onto the plane with you. Small travel sized bottles of bath oil are fine, a large almost empty bottle of bath oil with a tiny dribble left in the bottom is not allowed. Gels such as toothpaste or foundation make up are classes as liquids too, so pack them in your checked in baggage or they will be confiscated at security. If you are carrying baby milk, that will be allowed through security, but you will be expected to drink some in front of the security officers to prove that there is nothing except milk in the bottle. Once you have passed through the security area, you are free to buy water, soft drinks, perfume and other liquids in the airport and take them with you onto the plane.


Items such as scissors, knitting needles and other sharp objects have never been allowed on a plane, but may airports have large, clear plastic bins displaying all of the sorts of objects people forget that they have in their bag. Some of us cart around everything but the kitchen sink in our handbags, but before flying it is important to sift through the bag’s contents and remove all items which may be confiscated.


Many travellers carry with them items such as laptopns, e-readers, MP3 players and portable DVD players with them and when passing security these have to be removed from their cases and placed in a separate box to go through the X-ray machine. Security officers may ask you to boot up the laptop and demonstrate that it is fully functioning, so make sure items are charged before heading to the airport.

Plaisirs Boutique offer a great range of bath oils – you’ll need this for relaxing after your flight!

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