St. Kitts Airport’s Draconian Liquids Coverage

We simply took our son, Miles, on his first “trip” by airplane, and we determined to go to St. Kitts and Nevis (which I’ll write extra about in a separate submit). We had a good time, however our expertise departing the airport positive left a nasty final impression.

St. Kitts Airport punishes individuals with out quart-size baggage

Most international locations on the planet proceed to limit the liquids that you may take into the passenger cabin of an plane. Particular person containers can solely be as much as 3.4 ounces, and you’ll solely have as many objects as you’ll be able to slot in a quart-sized bag.

To be completely sincere, generally I journey with a quart-size bag, and generally I don’t. In the USA, I’ve TSA PreCheck, so I by no means need to take liquids out of my bag. However even in different international locations:

  • At numerous airports, you’ll be able to simply go away liquids in your bag
  • At airports that require you to take away your liquids out of your bag, I usually simply place my toiletry bag within the bin separate from the remainder of my stuff, and that’s ample
  • At airports that do strictly implement having to position all the things in a quart-size bag, they’ll often present baggage to those that don’t have them

That is my expertise from numerous miles flown, and numerous international locations visited. Properly, that brings us to Robert L. Bradshaw Worldwide Airport in St. Kitts (SKB). All the airport expertise is fairly disagreeable (not surprising for the Caribbean), however it’s the safety course of that irked me.

We checked in for our flight, then went as much as the second degree, then needed to fill out our departure immigration playing cards, then needed to watch for the exit immigration checkpoint, after which might lastly undergo safety.

We put all the things on the safety belt, and had been fairly frazzled, because it was our first time going by safety with a child exterior of TSA PreCheck (in fact that’s not anybody else’s downside, however it’s only a aspect not).

As I used to be on the point of slide a few of our stuff by the x-ray, right here’s what went down:

Safety officer: “What’s this?” (pointing to my toiletry bag that I zipped open, which had two small liquid containers in it)
Me: “It’s my toiletries”
Safety officer: “That must be in a quart-size bag.”
Me: “Oh, I’m sorry. Do you perhaps have one which I can use?”
Safety officer: “No. You want to purchase one.”
Me: “Okay… the place can I purchase that?”
Safety officer: “There’s a present store subsequent to the check-in desks that sells them.”
Me: “So I’ve to exit safety and immigration and go all the way in which again there?”

I used to be sort of speechless on many ranges:

  • If the airport desires to be very strict about its liquids coverage that’s honest sufficient, however it could be good if the airport then offered quart-size baggage for individuals who didn’t have them, like virtually each different airport on the planet; I imply, each consumer departing the airport pays a ~$22 airport service cost, and the way a lot does a bit bag price?
  • I wouldn’t even thoughts if the airport wished to pressure us to purchase a bag; it could simply be good if there have been a warning earlier than you went by immigration after which safety, or in the event you might purchase it instantly by the safety checkpoint, perhaps by inserting a sure amount of cash in a field
  • St. Kitts Airport could be very small and might get busy, so how is that this an environment friendly use of anybody’s time to need to course of friends a number of instances, and sluggish everybody down?

As we began to repack our stuff and put together to go away safety once more, Ford turned to the great girl behind us, and requested if there was any probability she had an additional bag. She opened her suitcase, and her carry-on really had a quart-size bag connected to it, and she or he mentioned “I knew this might turn out to be useful some day!”

Our expertise at St. Kitts Airport wasn’t nice

Why be so punitive with passengers?

I believe the reason for a coverage like that is simply that there’s a disconnect between the individuals who make the principles and people who need to implement them.

However I can’t assist however really feel that the airport’s coverage is downright punitive. It’s one factor to make your passengers purchase quart-size baggage, however on high of that they seemingly make it as sophisticated as doable. You need to go away safety and go away immigration to purchase one, massively delaying and inconveniencing everybody.

The economic system of St. Kitts and Nevis is nearly totally reliant on tourism. And relating to journey and hospitality, I are likely to assume that first and final impressions matter essentially the most. Your first impression units the tone on your time someplace, and your final impression is commonly what sticks with you essentially the most.

Completely implement no matter insurance policies you’re feeling should be enforced for aviation security (even when the liquids ban is mindless). However at the least don’t exit of your solution to deliberately make issues extra sophisticated for passengers.

Suffice it to say that that is fairly a distinction to Papeete Airport (PPT) in Tahiti, the place you’re welcomed with dwell music…

Backside line

In case you’re touring from St. Kitts Airport, be sure you carry a quart-size bag on your liquids. That is the primary airport I’ve been to that makes you purchase a bag in the event you don’t have one. However that’s not even what irks me — what frustrates me most is how robust the airport makes it to purchase a bag — it’s a must to go away each the safety and immigration space, go down a flooring, and go to the reward store by the check-in desks to purchase a bag.

Not precisely an awesome final impression to an in any other case good journey…

Has anybody else handled one thing like this at St. Kitts Airport, or at one other airport?

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