New aviation security measures for international air passengers

15 Feb 2007

Minister for Transport Safety Harry Duynhoven today launched a major public awareness campaign called Flysmart, designed to educate people travelling overseas on aircraft about new limits on the amount of liquids, aerosols and gels that can be carried in carry-on baggage on all outbound international flights from New Zealand.

“From 31 March, all international air travellers leaving New Zealand will only be able to carry onto an aircraft liquids, gels and aerosols in containers of 100ml or less, and only as many containers as fit into a single resealable plastic bag of one litre volume.  Flysmart is designed to inform those travelling overseas how they can comply with the new standards without causing any disruption to their travel plans or to the plans of other passengers.

“There will be exemptions for medicines, baby food and essential dietary supplies, but these items will be subject to additional checking by security staff," said Mr Duynhoven.

The new measures are in response to the arrest of a number of people in Britain last year, believed to be planning to board aircraft with liquid explosives disguised as water bottles.  Australia is introducing these new security measures on 31 March 2007 and will require passengers on international flights to and from Australia to be screened for liquids, aerosols and gels. 

"New Zealand has to introduce the measures on the same date, to enable flights to Australia to continue.  Given these measures are rapidly becoming a permanent feature of international air travel, it makes sense to introduce the measures across the board from this date”, said Harry Duynhoven

If passengers do not comply with the new measures, they risk missing their flight.  Experience in the United Kingdom, the European Union, Canada and the United States has shown that once passengers understand the security measures, delays are kept to a minimum. 

"For this reason, the government has decided to run the Flysmart campaign.  We have six weeks before the measures come into effect in which to provide information to travellers.  Information will be provided to international passengers through a new website,www.flysmart.govt.nz, and through travel agents, airlines and at airports”, said the Minister.

“The Flysmart campaign is being led by the Ministry of Transport with the Aviation Security Service and the Civil Aviation Authority.  It is strongly supported by airlines, airports and travel agents. 

“It will be very important for passengers to plan in advance.  New Zealanders will need to familiarise themselves with the new measures for carry-on baggage and pack any liquids, aerosols and gels accordingly.  By making simple plans and following this advice passengers can save time at the airport,” said Harry Duynhoven today.

For further information contact Peter Burke, Senior Communications Advisor, Ministry of Transport, 04 439 9236 or 021 659489