Fourth major UK airport has 100ml liquid and luggage restrictions lifted

Passengers queues to check in could be slashed by new scanners now in place at four UK airports
-Credit: (Image: PA)


A fourth major UK airport has lifted limits on liquids and being able to take some hand luggage on aircraft. Most travellers have for years been forced to restrict themselves to just 100ml of liquid and for them to be kept in clear plastic bags.

Items like laptops also always have to be removed for checking, meaning delays at check-ins. In a bid to make the process more streamlined the government ordered airports to introduce new scanners at airports - but many have been delayed even though they were supposed to be in place this summer.

Now people using Bristol Airport no longer have to restrict toiletries and liquids to 100ml bottles and will be able to leave laptops, tablets and mobile phones in their hand luggage as they pass through security screening. It joins Aberdeen, Teesside, and London City, where queue times have been cut by 50% after the scanners came in removing the need for manual bag checking.

The installation of the Next Generation Security Checkpoint (NGSC) Scanners, means that the previous 100ml liquid rule is no longer in force with departing passengers able to carry bottles containing up to two litres in their hand luggage. Electrical items like laptops will also be able to remain in carry-on bags when they pass through the new 3D scanners.

Bristol Airport has invested £11.5 million in the scanners, which will be in action from June 14. Bristol Airport said that, due to outstanding regulatory approval, only liquids up to 330ml can be carried.

Passengers will have to empty the contents of their pockets into their bag and empty the contents of metal water bottles. Bristol Airport Chief Operating Officer said: “We are delighted all customers travelling from Bristol Airport will benefit from state-of-the-art technology being introduced at security.

“The new equipment will reduce customer stress and inconvenience as the need for 100ml liquids to be placed in clear, plastic bags and removed from hand baggage will no longer be required. The new process delivers a much more customer friendly security operation using the latest technology and providing enhanced screening, allowing customers to keep personal items in their hand luggage.

“We’ve invested over £11.5m in the security equipment enhancements, and as with all complex and large-scale projects in a 24 hours, seven day a week operation, we needed to have a phased approach to the introduction of the new equipment and processes. However, customers should be reminded there are no immediate changes to the rules governing what can be taken through security as a result of this initiative, and the current hand luggage restrictions remain in place until 14 June 2024.

“Customers are reminded that whilst the UK has introduced the new security regulations on their return from destination airports customers are advised to check the requirements of their departing airport, as these regulations may differ from the UK.”

Bristol Airport is also upgrading its Fast Track security channels, between 14 June and 31 July. Pre-booked Fast Track customers will be directed through a dedicated lane in the Central Search area while the upgrade is taking place.

The Government previously announced it had granted extensions to several large UK airports unable to meet its June 1 deadline to fully install new scanning technology. At airports which have not put them in place, the limit remains 100ml and containers must be put in clear plastic bags.

Ministers have issued extensions of up to 12 months to several airports on a case-by-case basis, which is expected to be enough time for them all to complete the work. The Government is also exploring how financial penalties could be imposed for further non-compliance.