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Published Apr 11, 2022

We’ve all been there. You’re on your way to the airport but simply can’t shake that nagging feeling you’ve forgotten something important.

One viewing of family classic Home Alone tells us the importance of double checking (after all nobody wants their own ‘Kevin’ moment upon arrival at the airport).

While your situation is, admittedly, unlikely to be quite so dramatic there is still a lot of important stuff to remember, and to be brutally honest there’s a lot that could go wrong if you’re not properly prepared.

With many people returning to air travel for the first time in two years, and out of the habit, anxiety around what you need to do pre-flight is completely understandable.

Here’s our handy six step guide to ensuring you leave no stone unturned and can set off for the airport without worrying about any last-minute hitches.

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Is your passport in date?

This sounds obvious but you’ll be amazed at how many people are caught out.

As international travel was off the table for so long many of us won’t have been looking at our passports as regularly. Check your passport didn’t expire without you realising, and if you see it’s out of date you’ll need to renew it urgently (visit to do this).

Some countries require a certain amount of time left on your passport before expiry, and you can learn more about this in the Foreign Travel Advice section of the UK Government website.

Be aware of travel requirements for your destination

While Covid restrictions have been eased in the UK there may still be certain rules and requirements in place at your destination of choice.

Best check these well in advance of travelling – perhaps a few weeks before you’re due to go.

Check in online, it’s honestly the easiest way

For a smooth start to your journey we’d always suggest doing this.

During the busy summer months we sometimes see queues at check-in and, let’s be honest, who likes waiting in queues? Especially when you can check-in from the comfort of your own home.

For bag drop we’ve put together a guide which outlines when bag drop opens, and when you should arrive at the airport to check your luggage in. Our advice? Don’t chance it. Arrive within this window.

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Know the luggage rules

Each airline has its own luggage rules – so if you’re unsure whether your bag is too heavy, or too large, check with them first.

It’s a good idea to weigh your bag before leaving the house. Nobody wants to be binning stuff at the airport.

Unsure what can get through as hand luggage, and what you’ll need to place in the hold? We’ve put together a comprehensive guide looking at what you can and can’t get through security.

Baggage rules image

Plan your travel arrangements

If you’ve booked parking there are detailed directions and maps for each of the on-site car parks on our website.

Roads in and around the airport can be busy at peak times – particularly if there are other events on in Edinburgh (and especially around Royal Highland Show time) so check for any travel updates on the day.

You can also travel to the airport easily by bus, tram or taxi. You can even cycle if you’re travelling light.


Security and check-in is well signposted, so once you arrive you’ll have no trouble finding your way. In the event of queues staff will be stationed around the airport to point you the right way.

Hand luggage rules explained: Items you can and can't take through security

Arrive on time, but not too early!

Be at the airport in good time, but not too early as that can cause lengthy queues.

Your best bet is to check in before leaving the house and time your arrival so you’re here to drop off your luggage as soon as your bag drop opens. Then just make your way towards security.

We’ve loads of great stuff for you enjoy once you get through security whether you want to bag a great deal at duty free or sip a cold drink in one of the bars. So why wait?