Four major Australian airline carriers have issued warnings to travellers looking to fly on domestic and international flights to leave more time before their scheduled departure, in light of new security measures introduced by the Federal government over the weekend.
Qantas, Virgin Airlines, Jetstar and TigerAir have all delivered travel alerts to customers due to the long queues seen at major airports around the country on Monday, saying travellers should arrive two hours before domestic flights, three hours before international flights and also limit any carry-on and checked baggage to reduce security screening time.
A reminder if flying from a major Australian airport to pls allow more time for security screening. More info here: https://t.co/vNVfZvzHJN— Qantas (@Qantas) July 30, 2017
A travel reminder for those flying from a major Australian airport, please allow more time for security screening. https://t.co/LD8rC5uomr— Virgin Australia (@VirginAustralia) July 31, 2017
"The Australian Government has introduced additional aviation security measures at international and domestic terminals at Australia's major airports," the warnings said.
"Customers can expect to experience an increased level of security scrutiny at the airport so it may take a little longer than usual to get through the process.
"There are no changes to what can and cannot be carried on-board the aircraft."
While the duration of the extended wait times is yet to be known, it is believed travellers should expect longer waits in airports for as long as the Federal government maintains the beefed-up security measures.
The lengthy wait times have been attributed to tightened security after four men were arrested in terror raids across Sydney on Saturday.
Khaled Merhi, Abdul Merhi, Khaled Khayat and Mahmoud Khayat are being held in custody but are yet to be charged over a suspected bomb plot, as police continue to comb their Surry Hills residence for evidence.
No surprises that Jetstar queues the longest. Huge queues at Sydney's T2 terminal as terrorism security increased https://t.co/3b0aA1DEAs— Kate Galloway (@katgallow) July 30, 2017
Security was increased at Sydney Airport from Thursday, but on Sunday this was extended to all major airports nationwide. It includes an increased police presence and additional screening of both carry-on and check-in luggage.
The security measures caused crowds in some airports to congregate in baggage claim areas, as additional screening of checked-in luggage came into effect, and in Sydney lines snaked out of the domestic terminal and onto the pavement.
Massive queues at Sydney airport T2. Extra security following Saturday's raids, plus problems with the baggage belt. pic.twitter.com/exW1SJrR1N— Mary Lloyd (@MaryLloyd4) July 30, 2017
The queue now stretches outside the terminal and down the entire length of T2 st Sydney airport. pic.twitter.com/odKbrQ6Z54— Mary Lloyd (@MaryLloyd4) July 30, 2017