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<1>Glasgow Airport Baggage and Security

Security has always been paramount at airports, including Glasgow airport and it has never been more important than it is now.

Restrictions are tight, but if you know the rules before you set off, you should be able to get through the checks with the minimum of inconvenience.

Top tips for smooth security

Know how much hand and checked-in luggage you are allowed. Restrictions may differ between airlines, so check with your airline - there should be information on their website.

Arrive at the airport in plenty of time for your flight. Leave more time than you think you need. Passengers who have a long-haul flight may be advised to check in three hours before departure, which may seem excessive but isn't. With security so tight, getting through the airport takes longer than it used to. It is a good idea to go straight to security after you have checked in.

Have your passport, boarding pass and bag of liquids ready for inspection. Take large electrical items out of your hand luggage ready to put them through the X-ray machine separately.

Take your coat off ready for the X-ray machine, and be prepared to take your shoes off.

You may have your bags searched or be body-searched. These searches are nothing to worry about and are often random.

Hand luggage

airport hand luggage limits

Most airlines allow passengers one item of hand luggage no bigger than 56cm x 45cm x 25cm.

Liquids, creams, gels, aerosols and pastes may be carried in hand luggage, but they must be in containers of 100ml or less. They must be carried through security in a transparent, resealable bag no bigger than 20cm by 20cm. Only one bag of liquids is allowed per person.

Drinks: Drinks must be unopened. Drinks to take onto the plane can be bought in the departures area once you have cleared security. Anything you buy in the departures area can be taken onto the plane.

Food: Fruit, vegetables and solid food can be carried in hand luggage, but jams, honeys, sauces, soups, stews and other foods with a high liquid content need to go in the transparent bag with other liquids.

Cosmetics and toiletries: Hairspray, creams, deodorants, sun lotion, lip gloss, lip balm, liquid soap, toothpaste, shower gel, mascara, shaving foam and contact lens solution all count as liquids. Lipsticks and solid deodorants do not. Disposable contact lenses in sealed packaging are allowed, as are non-disposable lenses with 100ml of solution or less. Only razors where the blade is fully and permanently enclosed, and razor cartridges, are allowed.

Medicines: There are no restrictions on powder or pills. If you must carry more than 100ml of liquid medicine you will need approval from your airline, but there should be no problem with this. Always carry your prescription with you or a letter from your doctor. If you need to carry needles or other sharp items, pack them carefully to avoid the risk of injury to security staff, and let staff know you are carrying them when you arrive at security. Inhalers are allowed in hand baggage, but you must pack spare canisters in the hold.

Baby products: Wet wipes and powdered baby food can be taken onto the plane, but you will be asked to taste baby milk, juice, sterilised water and liquid food.

If you carry wrapped presents in your hand luggage, security staff may unwrap them.

Banned items: You may not take any of the following in your hand luggage: toy guns, razor blades, sports bats, clubs or cues, scissors, knives, tools, metal cutlery, Christmas crackers, golf umbrellas and anything that could be used as a weapon.

The following items are forbidden in all baggage: matches, lighters (apart from butane lighters and safety matches), acids, poisons, flammable liquids, explosives and bleach.

This is not an exhaustive list. If you are in doubt about anything, please check with your airline.

If your hand luggage is overweight or too big, you may be asked to check it into the hold. You can check the size of your hand luggage in gauges by the check-in desks.

Checked-in luggage

Your hold luggage allowance will be printed on your ticket. If you have an e-ticket, it will probably be on your booking confirmation.

If your hold baggage is heavier than the allowance, the airline is entitled to levy an excess baggage charge.

Locked suitcases: It is advisable to lock cases that you are checking into the hold, but security staff may open cases if they feel they need to inspect the contents. To avoid the possibility of staff having to break the lock on your case, it is advisable to lock it with a padlock approved by the Transportation Security Administration, as security staff can then open and relock it without damaging the lock. For more details visit the TSA website.

If you have any queries about anything, contact your airline or visit the Glasgow airport website.