Huge change that's coming to carry-on luggage in Australia
From June 30, the Australian Government is enforcing new rules on how much powder product you can pack in carry-on baggage on international flights and tougher screening at airport security.
The new rules will also apply to Australian domestic passengers departing from international terminals.
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) in the United States has also announced similar limits that also come into effect from this week.
So what does this mean for you? If you travel with powders – including loose and pressed cosmetic powders, baby formula and protein shake power – in your carry-on baggage, expect a change in the way you are screened at airport security from June 30.
As with liquids, aerosols and gels, powders will now need to be presented separately to airport security, but unlike liquids, you won’t have to put them in a separate, resealable plastic bag.
There is a difference between organic powders, such as baby formula, coffee, protein powder and spices, and inorganic powders, such as talcum powders, foot powders, powdered detergent, some cosmetics and cleaning products.
Organic powders are fine and don’t have a limit on the amount that can be carried on, but restrictions apply to inorganic powders.
If the powder is inorganic, you won’t be able to fly with more than 350g in total (or 350mL).
There is no limit to the number of containers you can pack but the total amount can’t exceed 350g.
Importantly, the quantity will be calculated on the total container volume, so “passengers cannot tip powders out to fall under the 350mL threshold,” according to the regulations.
The regulations also call out toys and souvenirs – like snow domes – that may be affected.
“Some items may not be obvious, such as snow domes or toys and souvenirs with sand or granular material inside,” the new rule reads.
Angus Kidman, finder.com.au’s travel expert, said there may be confusion as the rules comes into effect, pointing to the fact that “some talcum powders” are on the restricted list but “most cosmetics” are fine.
“In reality, the final decision will come down to what the security officer thinks, so I wouldn’t risk taking any talc or face powder in hand luggage unless you’re happy to risk it being confiscated,” he said.
The Australian Government said the rules will be strictly enforced and security screening officers have the discretion to confiscate items. Any powder that can’t be identified is likely to be thrown out.
The easy way to avoid this? Pack your powders in the luggage you check in.