Tennis racketSo the European Commission is under pressure to publish its list of what can and cannot be carried onto planes. All this has come to light due to one German passenger being banned from boarding as he was carrying tennis rackets in his hand luggage. I’ve had similarly ludicrous incidents – surly guards at Skavsta insisting I check in inline skates, and an asthma inhaler causing grave concern at Stansted (a plastic bag solved that one).

Let’s be blunt about this. Airline security procedures at present are a scandal. All that counts is what earns the airlines and airport operators as much money as possible, and whatever might be sensible for passengers counts for zero. All passengers are of course terrorists until proven otherwise, although earning money is involved you can temper that a bit.

Ask yourself this: is a tennis racket or pair of inline skates much more dangerous than a glass bottle of wine or a glass bottle of vodka? Wine and vodka in glass bottles are still available in duty free, and you can for sure inflict serious injury with those. Only the bottles of alcohol bring in money for airport duty free shops, and tennis rackets transported by travelers do not.

But smile everyone! It’s all for your security! 🙂


  1. Well, the principle that legislation is supposed to be available to the public is important. How can you have ‘rule of law’ if there is no law to read and obey?

    Jon, I understand your frustration and suspicions.

  2. Ah, no, sorry, maybe I wasn’t clear in the original entry. They let me on with it in the end… Probably good, judging by the ongoing concern about aeroplane cabin air quality.

  3. Oh, yes, that actually should make you feel a lot of safer. Put a weapon in a plastic bag, and it’ll be all safe.

    (I first thought you had to check it in in a plastic bag and couldn’t carry it along with you.)

  4. The asthma inhaler was a bit different. Putting it in a small see-through plastic bag made it safe. Simple.

  5. I hope they at least have asthma inhalers on board for passengers that really suffer from a sudden asthma attack.

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