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New shape to baggage rule

 Staff Reporter


From September, those travelling from the Sultanate’s international airports cannot have round or irregular-shaped luggage.

According to the Oman Airports Management Company, the new baggage policy comes into effect from September 1 across the Muscat, Salalah and Sohar international airports. This is in line with the highest standards and global operating procedures in the aviation industry, and items wrapped in blankets, linen or tied with rope will not be allowed. This is applicable to all passengers regardless of airline, cabin class or destination.

For travellers, the new policy will result in faster pickups, less baggage jams, and an overall smoother and hassle-free experience. For airport personnel, it will ensure the safety and security of baggage handlers, efficient check-ins and seamless access to checked baggage in case of further security screening.

Senior staff at OAMC said, “If the bag doesn’t lie flat, then (passengers) consider repacking using appropriate suitcases and travel bags. Baby strollers, bicycles, wheelchairs and golf bags will still be permitted.”

The company is currently working closely with all airlines, travel agencies, tourism-promoting websites and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to ensure that this policy is clearly communicated to all travelers to and from the Sultanate.

With air traffic in the Sultanate expected to grow by 40 per cent by 2019, the upcoming opening of the new Muscat International Airport, and in line with its responsibilities as a member of the Airport Council International worldwide, OAMC is implementing best practices and policies that will increase the effectiveness and efficiency of its operations and provide holistic experience for its passengers, it added.

OAMC added that the new practices were being introduced to raise the level of effectiveness and ensure that passengers had a better experience. The new policy was part of the company’s vision to make the airports in the Sultanate among the top 20 in the world by 2020.

Earlier this year, national carrier Oman Air had revised its baggage piece concept allowing passengers adhere to a one-piece 30-kg baggage. But it revised its additional baggage modes with an additional piece concept whereby passengers would be able to purchase additional pieces of luggage with a maximum weight of 20 kg per piece to be checked in.