What Items Are Generally Prohibited to Take Onto Commercial Flights?


Quick Answer

Items allowed in checked baggage on commercial flights but prohibited in carry-on luggage include sharp objects, sporting goods, tools, firearms and other implements for self defense, reports the Transport Security Administration. Items prohibited in both checked and carry-on baggage include explosives, flammable materials and disabling chemicals.

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What Items Are Generally Prohibited to Take Onto Commercial Flights?
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Full Answer

Sharp objects that passengers must transport sheathed in checked baggage include knives, swords, safety razor blades, box cutters and scissors over 4 inches long, explains the Transport Security Administration of the Department of Homeland Security. Passengers must check in sports equipment that are potential weapons, such as baseball bats, golf clubs, hockey sticks, pool cues and ski poles. Tools that passengers must sheathe and check in include axes, crowbars, hammers, drills and saws. Passengers must pack unloaded firearms, starter pistols, flare guns and ammunition in locked, hard-sided containers before checking them in. They must also check in all martial arts and self-defense items.

Items that passengers cannot transport on commercial airlines either in carry-on or checked baggage include fireworks, blasting caps, dynamite or other forms of explosives, cautions the Transport Security Administration. The law also prohibits transport of flammable items, such as gasoline, lighter fluid, paint thinner, aerosols and strike-anywhere matches. Prohibited chemicals include chlorine, liquid bleach, spray paint, tear gas and fire extinguishers. The Transport Security Administration uses its own discretion with questionable items. Although airline security may allow some items in checked baggage, state law may prohibit them upon landing.

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