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Packing Luggage




Luggage and Packing
 

The rules for items that can be transported by airline passengers  in the United States  have changed recently.  Our articles presents a list of items and whether they can travel with you on your vacation.  In addition, we describe what can be carried aboard and what can be included in checked luggage.

 

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Travel Advice - Can I take it?

Can I take it? *   Determining whether items are banned or allowed either in carry-on or "checked" luggage.

Air travel took a significant turn in August of  2006 when the threat of a terrorist incident caused the authorities in the United States to change the rules on what could be transported on airplanes.  We provide a table  provided by the U.S. TSA showing whether items can be taken along in carry-on or checked luggage. 

NOTE:  Ban On Liquids, Aerosols And Gels

  1. Travelers may now carry through security checkpoints travel-size toiletries (3 ounces or less) that fit comfortably in ONE, QUART-SIZE, clear plastic, zip-top bag.
  2. After clearing security, travelers can now bring beverages and other items purchased in the secure boarding area on-board aircraft.

At the checkpoint travelers will be asked to remove the zip-top bag of liquids and place it in a bin or on the conveyor belt. X-raying separately will allow TSA security officers to more easily examine the declared items.

Liquids in containers of 3 ounces or less may be carried in your carry-on bag so long as they are placed in a clear, one-quart plastic bag.

In addition, larger amounts of prescription liquid medications, baby formula and diabetic glucose treatments must be declared at the checkpoint for additional screening.

It is unlikely that additional changes in the liquid, aerosol and gel policy will be made in the near future.

This security regimen applies to all domestic and international flights departing U.S. airports. Travelers should, however, check with transportation security authorities in their country-of-origin for flights originating at non - U.S. airports.

Due to enhanced security measures, except for the items described above, larger amounts of liquids, gels, lotions and other items of similar consistency brought from home will not be permitted in carry-on baggage. These types of items must be packed in your checked baggage.  For more details see our article on the  rules for carry-ons.

Prohibited Items

As an added information source for passengers, you can also use the "Can I Bring  …?" tool from the My TSA iPhone and mobile app to get information on an item you want to bring on a plane. Simply type the name of the item in the box and you'll get information on whether or not it's prohibited and other information to help you speed through security. You can also access the tool from your mobile device if it has a web browser.

NOTE: Starting April 25, 2013 TSA relaxed restrictions on certain items previously prohibited as part of its ever evolving efforts to focus on items that pose the highest threat. Relaxed restrictions will apply to knives that do not lock, and have blades that are 2.36 inches or 6 centimeters or less in length and are less than 1/2 inch in width, novelty-sized and toy bats, billiard cues, ski poles, hockey sticks, lacrosse sticks and two golf clubs as part of their carry-on baggage.

Downloadable Brochures Photo of the prohibited items brocures
 
Updated!
Click here to download the TSA's  Prohibited Items brochure. (256kb, pdf)

It’s important to know that even if an item is generally permitted, it may be subject to additional screening or not allowed through the checkpoint if it triggers an alarm during the screening process, appears to have been tampered with, or poses other security concerns. The final decision rests with TSA on whether to allow any items on the plane. Also, please note that some dangerous items below are illegal in certain states and passengers will be subject to state law. It is a passenger’s responsibility to be aware that origination and destination cities may have local laws prohibiting the possession of these items

Items

Sharp Objects

For more information about upcoming changes to sharp objects click here.

Item Prohibited
  Carry-on? Checked?
Box Cutters NO OK
Ice Axes/Ice Picks NO OK
Knives - except for plastic or round bladed butter knives - see note above on small knives. NO OK
Meat Cleavers NO OK
Razor-Type Blades - such as box cutters, utility knives, and safety razor blades (disposable razors and their cartridges are permitted) NO OK
Sabers NO OK
Scissors - metal with pointed tips and blades shorter than 4 inches are allowed, but blades longer than 4 inches are prohibited NO OK
Swords - cutting or thrusting weapons, including fencing foils NO OK
NOTE: Any sharp objects in checked baggage should be sheathed or securely wrapped to prevent injury to baggage handlers and inspectors.

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Sporting Goods

For more information from the TSA  about upcoming changes to sporting goods click here.
 

Item Carry-on? Checked?
Baseball Bats  - See note in italics above NO OK
Bows and Arrows NO OK
Cricket Bats NO OK
Golf Clubs - See note in italics above NO OK
Hockey Sticks - See note in italics above NO OK
Lacrosse Sticks  - See note in italics above NO OK
Pool Cues  - See note in italics above NO OK
Ski Poles  - See note in italics above NO OK
Spear Guns NO OK
For more information, please read TSA's Traveling with Special Items section.

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Guns & Firearms

Item Carry-on? Checked?
Ammunition - Check with your airline or travel agent to see if ammunition is permitted in checked baggage on the airline you are flying. Small arms ammunitions for personal use must be securely packed in fiber, wood or metal boxes or other packaging specifically designed to carry small amounts of ammunition. Ask about limitations or fees, if any, that apply. Read TSA's Firearms & Ammunition section. NO OK
BB guns NO OK
Compressed Air Guns (to include paintball markers) - Carried in checked luggage without compressed air cylinder attached. NO OK
Firearms - firearms carried as checked baggage MUST be unloaded, packed in a locked hard-sided container, and declared to the airline at check-in. Read TSA's Firearms & Ammunition section. NO OK
Flare Guns - May be carried as checked baggage MUST be unloaded, packed in a locked hard-sided container, and declared to the airline at check-in. Read TSA's section on Camping and Firearms & Ammunition section. NO OK
Flares NO NO
Gun Lighters* NO OK
Gun Powder including black powder and percussion caps* NO NO
Parts of Guns and Firearms
Read TSA's  Firearms & Ammunition section.
NO OK
Pellet Guns NO OK
Realistic Replicas of Firearms NO OK
Starter Pistols - can only be carried as checked baggage and MUST be unloaded, packed in a locked hard-sided container, and declared to the airline at check-in. Read TSA's  Firearms & Ammunition section. NO OK
NOTE: Check with your airline or travel agent to see if firearms are permitted in checked baggage on the airline you are flying. Ask about limitations or fees, if any, that apply.
*Permitted in checked baggage only if it does not contain lighter fluid.

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Tools

Item Carry-on? Checked?
Axes and Hatchets NO OK
Cattle Prods NO OK
Crowbars NO OK
Hammers NO OK
Drills and drill bits (including cordless portable power drills) NO OK
Saws (including cordless portable power saws) NO OK
Tools (greater than seven inches in length) NO OK
Tools (seven inches or less in length) unless otherwise prohibited OK OK
Screwdrivers (seven inches or less in length) OK OK
Wrenches and Pliers (seven inches or less in length) OK OK
NOTE: Any sharp objects in checked baggage should be sheathed or securely wrapped to prevent injury to baggage handlers and Security Officers.

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Martial Arts & Self Defense Items

Item Carry-on? Checked?
Billy Clubs NO OK
Black Jacks NO OK
Brass Knuckles NO OK
Kubatons NO OK
Self Defense Sprays - One 4 ounce (118ml) container of mace or pepper spray is permitted in checked baggage provided it is equipped with a safety mechanism to prevent accidental discharge. Self Defense Sprays containing more than 2% by mass of Tear Gas (CS or CN) are prohibited in Checked Baggage. For more information visit www.faa.gov., click on Passengers, then Preparing to Fly. NO OK
Martial Arts Weapons NO OK
Night Sticks NO OK
Nunchucks NO OK
Stun Guns/Shocking Devices NO OK
Throwing Stars NO OK
NOTE: Any sharp objects in checked baggage should be sheathed or securely wrapped to prevent injury to baggage handlers and Security Officers.

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Explosive & Flammable Materials, Disabling Chemicals & Other Dangerous Items

Explosive Materials Carry-on? Checked?
Blasting Caps NO NO
Dynamite NO NO
Fireworks NO NO
Flares (in any form) NO NO
Hand Grenades NO NO
Plastic Explosives NO NO
Realistic Replicas of Explosives NO NO
Flammable Items Carry-on? Checked?
Aerosol (any except for personal care or toiletries in limited quantities) NO NO
Fuels (including cooking fuels and any flammable liquid fuel) NO NO
Gasoline NO NO
Gas Torches NO NO
Lighter Fluid NO NO
Common Lighters - Lighters without fuel are permitted in checked baggage. Lighters with fuel are prohibited in checked baggage, unless they adhere to the Department of Transportation (DOT) exemption, which allows up to two fueled lighters if properly enclosed in a DOT approved case. If you are uncertain as to whether your lighter is prohibited, please leave it at home. OK NO
Torch Lighters - Torch lighters create a thin, needle-like flame that is hotter (reaching 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit) and more intense than those from common lighters. Torch lighters are often used for pipes and cigars, and maintain a consistent stream of air-propelled fire regardless of the angle at which it is held. Torch lighters continue to be banned. NO NO
Strike-anywhere Matches - One book of safety (non-strike anywhere) matches are permitted as carry-on items, but all matches are prohibited in checked baggage. NO NO
Flammable Paints (See Other Items below for non-flammable paints) NO NO
Turpentine and Paint Thinner NO NO
Realistic Replicas of Incendiaries NO NO
NOTE: There are other hazardous materials that are regulated by the FAA. This information is summarized at www.faa.gov, click on Passengers, then Preparing to Fly.
Disabling Chemicals & Other Dangerous Items Carry-on? Checked?
Chlorine for Pools and Spas NO NO
Small compressed gas cartridges
(Up to 2 in life vests and 2 spares. The spares must accompany the life vests and presented as one unit)
OK OK
Fire extinguishers and other compressed gas cylinders NO NO
Liquid Bleach NO NO
Spillable Batteries - except those in wheelchairs NO NO
Spray Paint NO NO
Tear Gas - Self Defense Sprays containing more than 2% by mass of Tear Gas (CS or CN). NO NO
Vehicle Airbags NO NO
NOTE: There are other hazardous materials that are regulated by the FAA. This information is summarized at www.faa.gov.

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Other Items

Item Carry-on? Checked?
Gel-type candles NO OK
Flammable liquid, gel, or aerosol paint NO NO
Non-flammable liquid, gel, or aerosol paint Yes - 3.4 ounces (100ml) or smaller container OK
Marijuana (including both medical and non-medical)* NO NO
Snow globes (unless otherwise
prohibited)
**
OK OK
*Screening procedures are governed by federal law and designed to detect threats to aviation security. TSA officers do not search for marijuana or other drugs; however, if an item is found that may violate federal law during security screening, TSA will refer the matter to law enforcement. Whether or not marijuana is considered medical marijuana federal law provides no basis to treat medical marijuana differently than non-medical marijuana.
**Snow globes that appear to contain less than 3.4 ounces (approximately tennis ball size) will be permitted if the entire snow globe, including the base, is able to fit in the same one clear, plastic, quart-sized, re-sealable bag, as the passenger’s other liquids, such as shampoo, toothpaste and cosmetics.

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* All information provided by  the Transportation Security Administration and the Federal Aviation Administration

If you have additional questions on  what you can and cannot pack in carry-on or checked luggage check with the TSA at http://www.tsa.gov/

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