Coffee or pepper spray? Powder restrictions on flights spreading throughout the world

2018-07-12 06:30 - Gabi Zietsman
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Your makeup, coffee, protein powder or even baby powder will be getting the liquids-treatment on flights.

The United Kingdom has become the latest country to consider restricting powders on flights as part of another security measure in a world faced with terrorism. 

SEE: #EcoTravels: American Airlines joins the ban on plastic straws

According to The Times, this follows suit of other developed countries like the US, Australia and New Zealand who have started initiating the measures last month.

The general rule so far is that you're only allowed around 340g of powder - anything more will be subject to further scrutiny and checks, increasing your time spent in queues and going through customs. This is similar to the rules around bringing liquids onto a plane.

While The Times notes that there hasn't been any clarity on when the UK's rules will come into effect - they just have confirmation that it's being considered.

ALSO SEE: Houston, we have a problem: Boy scout's toy grenade causes bomb scare at US airport

Last month the US started the powder measures, asking foreign airports to start enforcing the rule for direct flights to the Trump country, reported USA Today.

"For ease of travel, TSA recommends placing larger items in checked baggage prior to arriving at the security checkpoint," said Mike Bilello, a TSA spokesman. “The international aviation community and industry’s actions represent collaborative approaches that greatly enhance global aviation security.”

The idea behind it is to restrict ways improvised bombs can be made on a plane, as well as home-made pepper spray or fentanyl.

So next time you're flying internationally, make sure all your powder-like substances are in small containers or a big separate container that can be screened separately. Or just throw everything into your check-in luggage and save yourself time going through security.

SEE: Reality show crew arrested for pulling 'insensitive' bomb stunt 

What can you still pack in your hand-luggage?

Did you know that cheese or sausage is indistinguishable from explosives in the X-ray machine? So, better leave your cheese at home as well! 

Unless you’ve been sojourning on Mars, you should really know by now that it’s not wise to bring a full bottle of shampoo in your hand luggage. Liquids, Aerosols and Gels (LAG) are restricted on international flights.

You can still bring LAG items in your hand luggage, but the bottles can’t exceed 100ml and should be packed in a plastic re-sealable bag. Not sure what LAG items are? Simple rule of thumb is: if you can pour it, pump it, squeeze it, spread it, smear it, spray it or spill it, it’s considered a LAG.

Sharp items are also a no-no, as well as toy guns and real firearms. You would think this is common logic, but OR Tambo recently provided a list of the items most often confiscated when passengers enter security checkpoints, and guess what? Blades and razors top the list. 

SEE: Bombs away! How to get through airport security smoothly

The items most frequently confiscated at OR Tambo International Airport are:

1.     Blades and razors

2.     Corkscrews

3.     Firearms and ammunition

4.     Golf equipment

5.     Knives, forks and scissors

6.     Nail files and nail clippers

7.     Ninja stars

8.     Pocket knives

9.     Safety pins and needles

10.  Tools

11.  Toy guns