Attention expatriates; No more pickles, ghee in your check-in baggage

The proportion of rejected check-in baggage compared to the total number of screened bags increased from 0.31 percent in December 2022 to 0.73 percent in May 2023. Photo: Manorama

Dubai/Mumbai: It’s common among the expatriates to pack pickles, ghee, and all while flying back to the Gulf after visiting home. But now, they must not carry such items in their check-in baggage, otherwise, it spells trouble. The authorities have released the list of items not allowed in flight while travelling by air from India to the UAE. The move comes even as the India-UAE air corridor has become one of the busiest routes, with a large number of Indians travelling to the Gulf for business, tourism, and employment purposes. Moreover, the inflow of visitors is likely to increase significantly as the festive season nears. The domestic and international passengers carrying such banned items have led to a spurt in cases of rejection of check-in baggage at Mumbai International Airport.

From dry coconuts to crackers
A few of the prohibited items that are frequently found in check-in baggage are dried coconut (copra), crackers, matchboxes, paint, camphor, ghee, pickles, and other oily food items. Some of the other items that are commonly found include e-cigarettes, lighters, power banks and spray bottles. Many passengers bring all these items without knowing about the ban on them. This creates risk. Since these items are prone to explosions, they can increase the intensity of any accident.

Burning materials
In a single month alone last year, 943 dry coconuts were found in the check-in baggage of passengers. Since dried coconut contains a high amount of oil, it can cause fire. India's Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) added it to the list of banned items in March 2022. However, most of the passengers are still not aware of this.

For the kind attention of passengers
The increasing rejection of check-in baggage indicates a lack of awareness among ordinary passengers about the prohibited or dangerous items on the flights. Authorities have now urged passengers to give priority to knowing and understanding the guidelines issued by the airport or airlines regarding dangerous and prohibited items.

Check-in baggage screening process
The proportion of rejected check-in baggage compared to the total number of screened bags increased from 0.31 per cent in December 2022 to 0.73 per cent in May 2023. The Mumbai airport baggage system has an 8-km baggage belt that handles 9,600 bags per hour at Terminal 2 and 4,800 bags per hour at Terminal 1.

List of a few prohibited items
Dry coconut (copra)
Oily food items
Power banks
Spray bottles

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