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Brisbane Airport Departures

When flying from the international terminal, access to the terminal is very easy no matter what means of transport you use.

If you arrive by car, taxi, private transfer or shuttle bus, the drop-off point is on level 4, directly outside the check-in hall. The main car park is a short walk away and the Airpark is five minutes on the regular shuttle bus. The Airtrain station has direct access to the terminal via an airbridge.

Many airlines now offer the facility to check-in online and print your boarding pass, or via an app on your mobile device with the pass stored on screen. Other airlines still require you to check-in at the airport.

If you need to check in and/or you have hold baggage, check the large information screens for your flight number and the assigned check-in desks. Some airlines have automated check-in kiosks. If you do not have any hold baggage and you have already checked in, you can go directly to the security screening area.


Brisbane airport gets very busy and there can be long queues at security, so it is advisable to arrive at the departures hall at least three hours before your scheduled departure time.

For checking-in, you will need your booking reference or boarding pass and your passport. Your hold bags will be weighed and, as airlines have different allowances for the size and weight of baggage, you should make sure you are not over the limit before arriving at the airport. It can be an expensive mistake to make.

There are certain goods that cannot be carried on the aircraft, and others can only be in hand luggage or hold luggage. Some examples of prohibited items are as follows:

  • Acid
  • Ammunition
  • Explosives
  • Firearms (and toy guns)
  • Gas cartridges / refills
  • Lighter fuel
  • Lighters
  • Mercury
  • Paint

For full details visit the CAA website.

Security Screening

After checking in, you will head to the security screening area. As you enter, your boarding pass will be scanned, whether it is a printed copy or stored on your mobile device, so have it ready to avoid any unnecessary delay.

In the screening area, jackets and coats must be removed along with belts, any metal objects and the contents of your pockets. These items are to be placed in the plastic trays provided to go through the x-ray scanner. Sometimes you will be requested to remove your shoes. Liquids cannot be in containers larger than 100 ml and must not total more than 1 litre. These must be in a sealable transparent plastic bag.

Your bags will go on the belt, but laptops must be taken out and go through separately. You may be asked to turn the laptop on, so make sure it is sufficiently charged.

You will walk through a metal detector and a green light should show but, if you've forgotten to remove something metal, a red light will show and a customs officer will scan you with a mobile scanner to trace the offending item.

Departures Lounge

Once you've cleared security you should have time to relax in the departures lounge. Information boards will tell you which gate your flight will be boarding from, and if there are any delays, so check regularly.

In the departures lounge, there are bars, cafés and restaurants selling a variety of food and drinks. There are also many shops with a great choice of gifts, souvenirs, sports gear, fashions, electronics, newspapers and books, etc. There is a duty-free shop for alcohol, cigarettes, perfumes and much more.

A word of warning. If your flight has a stopover at another airport, at which you don't have access to your hold luggage, and you have purchased any bottles of liquids over 100 ml, such as wines, spirits or perfume, these can be confiscated at the next airport's security screening.

When your boarding gate is shown on the information screens, you should head straight there. At the gate, you will have to show your passport and boarding pass.

Domestic Departures

The domestic terminal is also easily accessible, no matter how you arrive. You should allow two hours to check in for domestic flights. The check-in area has separate areas for Virgin Australia, Qantas and a central area for all other airlines. The check-in and security procedure is the same as for international departures. The departures lounge also has similar facilities.