14 Surprising Things You Aren’t Allowed to Take on a Plane
Sorry, but your Magic 8 Ball might have to stay at home.
You’re welcome (though not necessarily recommended) to pack some minibar-sized bottles on the plane with you, but don’t try getting the most bang out of your 100 milliliters by sneaking a high-proof liquor. Any alcoholic beverages more than 140 proof (70 percent alcohol) aren’t allowed in your carry-on or checked bag. So yes, your 151 rum needs to stay at the resort too.
Magic 8 Ball
We’ll have to quote tsa.gov on this one: “For Carry-on bags: We asked the Magic 8 Ball and it told us…Outlook not so good! For Checked bags: We asked the Magic 8 Ball and it told us…It is certain!” For more airport security humor, learn why the TSA’s Instagram is the internet’s best-kept secret.
You might have a hard time finding getting your holiday gifts through security. Snow globes can only contain up to 3.4 ounces of liquid, meaning the globe is about the size of a tennis ball. You’ll also need to squeeze the whole thing, base and all, into the quart-sized bag with the rest of your liquids. If you can’t get it to fit, you’ll have to put it in a checked bag. Find out which four letters on your boarding pass guarantee a longer wait at airport security.
Believe it or not, fertilizers can be an explosion risk. The ammonium nitrate in some versions can also be an ingredient for bombs, so green thumbs should wait to get their hands on fertilizer until they’re off the plane.
Hopefully you don’t plan on doing any heavy cleaning on vacation. Even in a 3.4-ounce liquids container or a checked bag, bleach won’t be allowed onto the plane. Learn the 11 things you should pack in a carry-on so you’re ready for anything.
They probably can’t do much damage, but the TSA still doesn’t allow foam toy swords in carry-on luggage.
If you’ll be camping or hiking, wait to buy bear spray (pepper spray for bear attacks) or bear bangers (devices that make a loud noise to scare bears away) until you reach your destination. Neither is allowed in your carry-on or checked bag. Don’t miss these other 18 things you should never do on an airplane.
Bowling might be the epitome of a noncontact sport, but the TSA fears some passengers could get the wrong idea. Just in case you decide to use your pins as a weapon, you’ll need to stow them in your checked luggage. Surprisingly enough, you can keep your bowling ball on the plane with you, though.
This equipment belongs in your checked bag. Because it could be used as a bludgeon, the TSA won’t allow it in a carry-on.
Cordless curling irons
This is one of the few items allowed in a carry-on but not a checked bag. Cordless curling irons use butane, which could catch fire if the hair tool turns on by accident. In your carry-on, you’ll need to put a safety cover over the curler just in case. Make sure you know these genius hacks for packing beauty products in a carry-on.
Cast iron pans
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Chefs can’t get too excited spotting cookware souvenirs. You can bring cast iron cookware in your checked bag, but it won’t make it through security in a carry-on. Check out these other items you can (and can’t) pack in a carry-on.
Anyone traveling to the United Kingdom during the holiday season might be tempted to take home a Christmas cracker as a souvenir. Filled with jokes, candy, and toy crowns, they seem innocent enough, but most U.K. airlines won’t allow them, and the TSA bans Christmas crackers and party poppers from all luggage.
Gel heating pads
The gel inside is essentially a liquid, so you won’t be able to carry a heating pad that big in with your carry-on. Stick with an electric heating pad, or stow it in your checked bag.
You can’t bring pepper spray in your carry-on bag, and even checked bags have their limits. Any mace or pepper spray needs a safety mechanism preventing it from spraying, and it can’t contain more than 2 percent tear gas. Find out which other 13 things are most likely to get you flagged by the TSA.