Security Detail Update for Departures from Colombo International Airport

Helpful information for visitors departing Sri Lanka (Updated as new information is received). This is for those seeking information on departures from the Bandaranaike International Airport after Easter Sunday Attacks in Sri Lanka.

  • Airport authorities have requested passengers to arrive 4 hours prior to flight departure time (the standard had been 3 hours). Most passengers who check in online or do not have to drop off baggage have done so with much less time in the past but in the current situation, it is best to follow given advice. Be aware that there might be overnight curfews. If a curfew is expected, discuss your travel plans with the hotel or designated service provider.
  • Drive times to the airport will vary according to the general traffic situation, time of travel and mode of travel. Roads have been deserted since the Easter Sunday attacks but life is expected to return to normal soon and with it, the traffic will increase.
  • Vehicles and passengers are thoroughly checked. This takes about 2 minutes on average per car and more for cars and vans with several passengers. This leads to a long line of vehicles. and leads to a long line of vehicles. Depending on flight traffic and the progress of checking, this last stretch (from the start of the traffic jam to the checking point) which is about 2km may take over an hour. Come prepared for this wait. There are no toilets along this stretch.
  • To make the process quick for you and easy for the security personnel, keep your vehicle tidy. Main luggage at the back and carry-on luggage with you and ready for inspection. Also, have your passport and ticket in your hands as you arrive at the security check. Once you are through with the security there is no hindrance. But you will have to get off the vehicle before the departure terminal and take your luggage with you. You could grab a trolley if you have more than a backpack.
  • All bags will be scanned. But if security feels suspicious they may do a detailed search. Once again, please keep your passport and ticket ready for inspection at all times.
  • Finally, be alert! Sri Lanka has enjoyed a whole decade of peace and as such enjoyed a high degree of freedom. That has all changed but you may find most security checks within the airport to be equal to what you find anywhere else. So, in general, avoid crowded areas and be on the look-out for suspicious persons or items. Once you clear immigration, there is a decent waiting area with a selection of coffee shops and restaurants.
  • ·We wish things didn’t have to be this way and we sincerely apologize for your negative experiences. We hope you would remember Sri Lanka for all the right reasons and would love to see you back in our Paradise Island someday.

Thank you. Bohoma Isthuthi 

Tags: Sri Lanka Security, Easter Sunday attacks Sri Lanka, Departures from Colombo International Airport, travel advisory Sri Lanka


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