Limits on liquids in hand luggage to be relaxed soon.

Hotel News - 06/12/2010

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Security restrictions that stop passengers from carrying drinks, shampoos or perfume in containers larger than 100ml are to be phased out starting in April next year. The ban on liquids was implemented in August 2006.

The relaxed rules will come in gradually, starting in April, 2011. Most passengers, however, won’t enjoy the end of limits until 2013.

For years since the ban was first imposed, many travellers have been frustrated and inconvenienced, often to their own cost, by the limits, which prevent any container of liquids above 100ml from being carried in hand luggage. Piles of cosmetics products and drinking water were confiscated at security points. At Heathrow, some 2,000 tonnes of liquids were discarded each year.

UK Transport Secretary Phillip Hammond announced that the initial phase in relaxing the ban against liquids, gels and aerosols, will start in April. Passengers on flight transfers from outside the European Union will be allowed to bring liquids they have bought at duty-free shops on connecting flights inside Europe.

Even those liquids, however, will still need to be packed in clear plastic bags. They will also have to be screened by security machines. The vast majority of passengers will not enjoy the new rules until 29 April, 2013. By that time, European airports are required to operating screening machines able to detect suspicious liquids.

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