Aage Duenhaupt, a spokesman for A4E, which represents airlines including BA’s owner, International Airlines Group, Ryanair and easyJet, said thousands of flights had already been delayed. “It’s a crazy situation. When arriving, at least delayed passengers don’t miss their flights, but when returning, you need to queue up again and could miss your flight. You need to make sure you are on time at the gate,” he said. British Airways, Ryanair and EasyJet sent text messages to customers warning them of long delays. Massive queues formed at principal airports, at least three hours being required to get through security checks.
People at Barcelona’s El Prat airport
The new rules have been introduced following terror attacks in Paris and Brussels. As part of the security checks, travelers’ details have to be run through databases to see if they pose a threat .Even Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary declared at a news conference that he could not understand why passengers on outbound flights were being checked, saying: “If people are leaving your country, what the hell is the problem?” Reports from passengers suggest the delays are not universal and depend on the airport, the time of day and the number of border control staff on duty. EU member states are not obliged to check every non-Schengen passport until October, when regulation EU 2017/458 comes into full force.