Passengers told to limit luggage to reduce airport delays following police raids in Sydney
Airlines and airports are urging travellers to limit their luggage and arrive earlier for domestic and international flights, as tougher security measures prompt concerns of travel delays across Australia.
The federal government announced tougher security processes at all major Australian airports after police claimed to have foiled a terror plot in Sydney on Saturday.
Travellers are being told to arrive two hours before domestic flights and three hours before international flights. Qantas, Tiger, and Virgin Australia have also urged passengers to limit the amount of carry-on and checked baggage they bring, to reduce delays in screening.
The precautions include additional screening of cabin and checked bags at Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Darwin, Hobart, Perth, Adelaide, Canberra, Cairns and the Gold Coast.
“All Australian airports have been asked to exercise increased vigilance in their security operations, including at security screening points and within the terminal area,” transport minister Darren Chester said.
“As a matter of course, the Australian government will continue to monitor security developments and adjust security settings as needed,” he said.
There were mixed reports about the impact of the new arrangements at Sydney airport. The ABC reported waiting time of up to 90 minutes.
But a number of users on social media praised Qantas and Sydney airport workers for getting passengers through quickly.
The alleged plot to use a home-made device to bring down a plane in Australia prompted the tougher arrangements.
Police raided five properties across Sydney on Saturday, arresting four men who are yet to be charged.
Australian federal police commissioner, Andrew Colvin, said there was nothing to suggest airport security had been compromised, but insisted the plot was credible.