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Additional hand luggage restrictions on some flights to the UK

Large phones, laptops and tablets not allowed in the cabin on flights to the UK from Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Tunisia.

Additional hand luggage restrictions on some flights to the UK

Published: 21 March 2017
By Chris Haycock



On Tuesday 21 March the government announced new aviation security measures on all inbound direct flights to the UK from the following countries:

  • Turkey
  • Lebanon
  • Jordan
  • Egypt
  • Tunisia
  • Saudi Arabia

Under the new arrangements, passengers boarding flights from these countries to the UK will not be allowed to take phones, laptops and tablets and peripheral devices as outlined below that exceed any one of the following dimensions:

  • length: 16.0cm
  • width: 9.3cm
  • depth: 1.5cm

into the cabin of the plane. Passengers with these devices should check with their airlines for more details on transporting these items.

The additional security measures may cause some disruption for passengers and flights, and we understand the frustration that will cause, but our top priority will always be to maintain the safety of British nationals.

Direct flights to the UK from these destinations can continue to operate to the UK subject to these new measures being in place. Travellers are advised to keep up-to-date with the latest FCO travel advice and to check online with their chosen carrier for further information.

UK

Which devices are not allowed in the cabin?

  • large phones
  • all laptops
  • all tablets and e-readers

What about peripheral devices?

The following peripheral devices, designed to be used with either a phone, laptop or tablet and exceeding any one of the following dimensions:

  • length: 16.0cm
  • width: 9.3cm
  • depth: 1.5cm

will not be allowed in the cabin:

  • keyboards
  • power cable transformers
  • external hard drives

will not be allowed on board the aircraft in either cabin or hold baggage:

  • spare or separate device batteries
  • portable power sources

Existing safety regulations mean that spare batteries and portable power sources can no longer be carried on board aircraft operating on affected routes in either cabin or hold baggage.

Passengers should contact their airline for further information.

Which flights and routes will this apply to?

These new measures will apply on all inbound direct flights travelling to the UK from the following countries:

  • Turkey
  • Lebanon
  • Jordan
  • Egypt
  • Tunisia
  • Saudi Arabia

Passengers travelling on these flights should check online with their carrier if they require further information.

Concerned

Should I cancel my trip? Is it still safe to go to these countries?

These new measures are concerned with flights into the UK. The UK is not stopping direct flights to and from those countries. Those with imminent travel should contact their airline for further information. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office also publishes travel advice.

What about transfer passengers? Will passengers who get on in a country not affected but transfer through one of the designated countries be subject to the same security measures?

Transfer passengers who board a UK-bound flight on a route affected will be subject to the measures. If they have a large phone, laptop or tablet with them, it will need to be placed in the aircraft’s hold for the UK-bound flight. Passengers should check with their airline for further information.

What’s a ‘normal sized mobile phone’?

Most smart phones will be allowed in the cabin, including many common popular handsets such as:

  • iPhone 7 Plus
  • Samsung Galaxy 7 Edge
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
  • LG G3
  • Sony Xperia Z2

The new UK measures will mean that phones, laptops and tablets larger than:

  • length: 16.0cm
  • width: 9.3cm
  • depth: 1.5cm

will not be allowed in the cabin.

Dimensions

What about medical devices?

If the device is not a large phone, laptop or tablet it is not affected by these new measures. Existing rules on medical equipment in hand luggage will still apply.

Can I take items purchased from duty free on board?

Any phones, laptops or tablets larger than the above dimensions will not be allowed in the cabin and will be placed in the aircraft hold, regardless of whether they were purchased in duty free.

Can

Why are these measures not in place for flights travelling from the UK?

This applies to inbound flights. The UK has some of the most robust aviation security measures in the world but we keep this under constant review based on assessment of risk.

More about hand luggage restrictions on electronic devices and items at UK airports.

What about any costs incurred as a result of this? And what if I want to cancel my flight can I get compensation?

This is matter for the airlines. We encourage them to take a customer focused approach.

How long will these measures be in place?

The UK has some of the most robust aviation security measures in the world and we will continue to take all the steps we believe are necessary to put in place security measures we believe will be effective and proportionate. We keep our aviation security measures under constant review.

Is this in response to a specific threat?

It is long standing government policy not to comment on intelligence matters.

Why isn’t the UK following the US and banning all personal electronic devices from the cabin, why only phones, laptops and tablets?

We are confident these measures are proportionate and effective.

Aviation and maritime media enquiries


Highways England news licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0

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