Increased security measures are in place at all UK airports, with strict rules on what you can and can't carry in your hand baggage. It is important to bear this in mind when preparing to travel to avoid unnecessary delays at airport security.
Passengers are advised to arrive at the airport in good time for their flight, approx 2hrs prior to flight departure.
Size and type of hand baggage allowed
Hand baggage is luggage that you carry on the plane with you, while hold baggage is luggage that you check-in.
All baggage items, including hand baggage, must be screened, regardless of size.
The Department for Transport no longer sets a maximum size for items of hand baggage. You should always check size limits with your airline before you travel.
To ensure the quickest security search and aircraft boarding process passengers are reminded that only ONE item of hand luggage is permitted at London Luton Airport, except for those flying with El Al who have a two bag entitlement.
You're allowed to take electrical items (like laptops and hairdryers) in your hand baggage, but they have to be removed and screened separately. Remember, if you are carrying a laptop in a case, this will count as your one item of hand baggage.
Essential medical equipment
You are allowed to bring medical equipment if it is essential for your journey. The equipment will be screened separately and must be accompanied by supporting documentation from a qualified medical professional, such as a letter from your doctor.
Pushchairs, walking aids and wheelchairs are usually permitted in the cabin, but they will need to be security screened first.
If you plan on travelling with a large musical instrument, you should contact your airline before booking. You may need to make special arrangements, like buying an extra seat. Any musical instrument you bring with you will need to be screened separately.
Taking liquids in your hand baggage
Wherever possible you should pack liquids in your hold baggage, as there are restrictions on the amount you can take in your hand baggage.
- all drinks, including water, soup and syrups
- cosmetics and toiletries, including creams, lotions, oils, perfumes, mascara and lipsticks
- sprays, including shaving foam, hairspray and spray deodorants
- pastes, including toothpaste
- gels, including hair and shower gel
- contact lens solution
- any other solutions and items of similar consistency
If you need certain liquids during the flight, you can take them into the cabin in limited quantities as follows:
- containers must hold no more than 100ml
- containers must be carried in a single, transparent, resealable plastic bag, which holds no more than a litre and measures approximately 20cm x 20cm
- contents must fit comfortably inside the bag so it can be sealed
- the bag must not be knotted or tied at the top
- each passenger can carry only one of these bags
- the bag must be presented for examination at the airport security point
If you are unable to prepare at home, bags are available from vending machines within the Airport and cost £1 for 2 bags.
Containers larger than 100ml (excluding essential medicines) will not be allowed through the security point even if they are only part full.
Essential medicines, including inhalers and liquid dietary foodstuffs
You are allowed to carry essential medicines of more than 100ml in your hand baggage, but you will need:
- prior approval from your airline - check its website for details
- supporting documentation from a relevant qualified medical professional, eg: a letter from your doctor or a prescription
Remember to take only what you need for your journey. Extra supplies and larger containers of medicine should go in your hold baggage.
Prosthetic limbs, hip and knee replacements
Whilst London Luton Airport appreciates the potential sensitivities surrounding prosthetic limbs and replacement hip and knee joints, passengers are advised that in the interests of safety and security such physical aids may require additional checks possibly including x-ray screening.
Private search facilities are available to all passengers in order to minimise any potential embarrassment. London Luton Airport is committed to treating all passengers with respect whilst ensuring a safe and secure travelling experience.
Liquids bought at the airport
You can take liquids you buy after passing through security into the aircraft cabin, as these items go through a separate screening process.
This includes bottled water, wines and spirits and fragrances and cosmetics of any size.
Please refer to your airline's restriction on the number of bags permitted in the cabin.
No hot beverages may be taken onboard an aircraft.
One lighter per person may be carried on a flight.
Lighters are considered to be liquids and should be put inside the resealable plastic bag or screened separately.
You must keep the lighter on your person throughout the flight.
It is very important that you do not:
- place it in your hold baggage
- return it to your hand baggage after screening
Travelling with babies
Baby food and baby milk
You are allowed to take baby food, baby milk and sterilised water in your hand baggage.
- soya milk for babies
- sterilised water for the baby (must be in a baby bottle)
- formula, breast milk or cow's milk specifically for babies
- baby food of various consistencies
You are allowed to take enough for the journey. In some cases this may be over 100ml. The adult carrying the baby food or milk may be asked to verify it by tasting.
Baby food in a quantity sufficient for the duration of the flight may be taken with you in hand luggage but you will be asked to taste the food when you go through the security search area. Jars are preferable to cartons as the jars are easier to check and can be resealed.
Nappies and wet wipes are permitted but any creams, pastes, lotions or gels must be of no more than 100ml maximum placed in a resealable clear plastic bag as per the restrictions on liquids in hand luggage.
You may also pack jars of food and prepared cartons of sealed formula milk in your hold luggage.
A pushchair or buggy may be taken through security search. You will be asked to remove your baby for a few minutes as the buggy will need to go through the x-ray machine separately.
Hand luggage items NOT ALLOWED
DO NOT pack the following items in your hand luggage
(a) guns, firearms and other devices that discharge projectiles
— devices capable, or appearing capable, of being used to cause serious injury by discharging a projectile, including:
— firearms of all types, such as pistols, revolvers, rifles, shotguns,
— toy guns, replicas and imitation firearms capable of being mistaken for real weapons,
— component parts of firearms, excluding telescopic sights,
— compressed air and CO 2 guns, such as pistols, pellet guns, rifles and ball bearing guns,
— signal flare pistols and starter pistols,
— bows, cross bows and arrows,
— harpoon guns and spear guns,
— slingshots and catapults;
(b) stunning devices
— devices designed specifically to stun or immobilise, including:
— devices for shocking, such as stun guns, tasers and stun batons,
— animal stunners and animal killers,
— disabling and incapacitating chemicals, gases and sprays, such as mace, pepper sprays, capsicum sprays, tear gas, acid sprays and animal repellent sprays;
(c) objects with a sharp point or sharp edge
— objects with a sharp point or sharp edge capable of being used to cause serious injury, including:
— items designed for chopping, such as axes, hatchets and cleavers,
— ice axes and ice picks,
— razor blades,
— box cutters,
— knives with blades of more than 6 cm,
— scissors with blades of more than 6 cm (as measured from the fulcrum),
— martial arts equipment with a sharp point or sharp edge,
— swords and sabres;
(d) workmen’s tools
— tools capable of being used either to cause serious injury or to threaten the safety of aircraft, including:
— drills and drill bits, including cordless portable power drills,
— tools with a blade or a shaft of more than 6 cm capable of use as a weapon, such as screwdrivers and chisels,
— saws, including cordless portable power saws,
— bolt guns and nail guns;
(e) blunt instruments
— objects capable of being used to cause serious injury when used to hit, including:
— baseball and softball bats,
— clubs and batons, such as billy clubs, blackjacks and night sticks,
— martial arts equipment;
(f) explosives and incendiary substances and devices
— explosives and incendiary substances and devices capable, or appearing capable, of being used to cause serious injury or to pose a threat to the safety of aircraft, including:
— blasting caps,
— detonators and fuses,
— replica or imitation explosive devices,
— mines, grenades and other explosive military stores,
— fireworks and other pyrotechnics,
— smoke-generating canisters and smoke-generating cartridges,
— dynamite, gunpowder and plastic explosives.
Items that must NOT be taken onboard an aircraft
For safety reasons, there are a number of items that cannot be taken onto an aircraft, so please do not pack them in any luggage:
- Flammable liquids and solids
- Oxidisers such as bleaching powders
- Organic peroxides
- Tear gas devices or any gas cylinders
- Infectious substances such as live virus materials
- Wet car cell batteries
- Instruments containing mercury
- Instruments containing magnets
- Fireworks, flares and other pyrotechnics, including party poppers and toy caps
- Non-safety matches, fire lighters, lighter fuel, paints, thinners
- Poisons, arsenic, cyanide, weed killer
- Radioactive materials
- Acids, corrosives, alkalis, caustic soda
- Creosote, quicklime, oiled paper