Coming from the UAE? Be careful about what you carry in your hand luggage
December 12, 2017 | 9:23 AM
by Times News Service

Muscat: If you are coming to Oman from the UAE, do check what is in your hand baggage.

In the last few weeks, many people in Oman have learnt the importance of this the hard way, when their goods were seized by security officials after clearing immigration.

“I bought an outdoor lamp for camping from Dubai, which had a long cable attached to it, and I decided to take this in my hand baggage. However, the security personnel stopped me after I had gone through immigration and asked me to surrender the cable,” said a shocked Omani national.

He was also told that he could not go to the check-in area to drop it off with the airline.

“This is simply because as I had crossed the immigration, there was no way I could go back there to drop it off with the checked-in bags,” he told Times of Oman.

He also remarked that similar long cables were available for sale in duty-free shops. “Surprisingly, we can buy from there, but we cannot buy these from outside,” he noted.

Travel agents stressed that people heading home should always check the items they plan to bring back, and ensure that they are not prohibited or restricted at the airports. “It is always advisable to check in most of your goods,” remarked a travel agent.

It is not just in the UAE that travellers have to be careful about their hand luggage. “All the major airports in the world are tightening their security measures,” stated a travel agent.

With strict laws governing the airports, residents and citizens need to be better informed when they travel, emphasised the travel agents.

Travel Point CEO Sunil Prabhakar defended the authorities saying that rules had been put in place for the safety of travellers. “Rules are there to make people safe. Moreover, restricted items will be seized if you carry them,” asserted Prabhakar.

He said that a list detailing the restricted items should be made public by the airlines concerned. “If you have doubts about the item that you want to carry, then call the airlines a day before and demand a clarification. They are bound to respond. I have done it myself. I was flying from the US to Muscat once, and I had called the airlines to ask if I can carry a battery in my hand luggage. I was told that in that particular airlines, one could not carry batteries in the hand luggage. One should be responsible enough to do that,” he added.

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