Potential new flight safety measure

If you already feel like getting through airport security is a trying ordeal, the process might be about to get far worse. The Express reports that UK and US counterterrorism officials are considering a complete ban on airplane hand luggage in the run up to Christmas and beyond.

It would be the result of the escalating conflict in Iraq and Syria, which has led officials to anticipate a terrorist attack.

No new security measures have yet been put in place in Europe, so for now you're free to keep packing your hand luggage as close to the weight limit as possible and battle other passengers for the overhead storage space. Other potential measures discussed also include a ban on electronics - phones, tablets, etc. - in hand luggage, which would have the side effect of leaving passengers vulnerable to questionable airplane movie selections.

The problem security faces is that, as past incidences and scares have shown, almost any carry-on item could be turned into a bomb. At the moment passengers can't carry any liquid containers over 100ml onto a plane, and all of these must be placed in a clear bag to be checked by security. It's already tryingly rigid, but no hand baggage at all would offer a new level of frustration for passengers, especially those who like to travel light.

Whether or not this will become a reality is unclear. As important as airport security is, there would likely be a great deal of resistance from airlines, and most passengers wouldn't be too keen on being parted from their phone/computer/ludicrously oversized bar of duty-free chocolate. But if the threats continue they might just have to find a way to cope.