If you’ve taken a flight in the last decade, you might have seen airports list a number of items you can’t take onto the plane in your hand carry luggage. Some of these “banned” items are restricted because they pose a potential safety hazard. Others might not be allowed because they take up excessive space.
In either case, no one enjoys fishing items out of their hand carry bag and stuffing them into their large luggage piece while waiting in line at the check-in counter. After all, this task can be both frustrating and embarrassing to do in public. So it’s best to learn about the different items you shouldn’t carry in your carry-on bags before leaving for the airport.
Luckily, we’ve compiled a guide of ten items that aren’t allowed in your hand baggage. So let’s dive into it!
1. Knives or Blades
Knives and blades are at the top of most banned lists because they pose a safety hazard. The Transport Security Agency (TSA) banned these items back in 2001 and don’t have any plans of lifting this ban anytime soon.
So if you were planning on bringing a small Swiss army knife on-board to cut up apple slices, you might want to keep it in your 30 inch luggage piece instead. However, you should note that the TSA does allow you to bring round-bladed butter knives on-board. As their name suggests, these knives aren’t good for much other than spreading butter. However, there’s a good chance your in-flight meal will already include one of these.
Any prohibited knives you intend to transport should be safely tucked away in packing cubes and placed securely into your checked large luggage piece.
2. Strike-Anywhere Matches
Believe it or not, you are allowed to keep a box of safety-matches in your hand carry luggage. These items may be flammable, but they aren’t likely to ignite unless they have been exposed to a direct flame or struck against their matchbox’s comb strip.
Strike-anywhere matches, on the other hand, aren’t allowed in your hand carry luggage. These matches will light after friction is applied to them from any suitable striking surface. This makes them a more significant fire hazard than safety matches. For this reason, you aren’t allowed to bring strike-anywhere matches with you onto your flight.
You should note that you aren’t allowed to keep strike-anywhere matches in your checked baggage either. So if you plan to use strike-anywhere matches at your travel destination, it is best to purchase them locally as you won’t be able to bring them with you.
3. Certain Types of Scissors
Certain types of scissors aren’t allowed in your hand carry baggage as they pose a safety hazard. Long scissors with pointed ends can be used as weapons, so airlines would prefer that travelers keep such items in packing cubes in their checked 30 inch luggage piece. However, you should note that two types of scissors are permitted in carry-on bags.
The first type is scissors with round points. These scissors don’t have pointed tips, so they’re less likely to be used as weapons.
The second type is scissors with blades shorter than 6cm. These scissors can have pointed tips, but someone isn’t likely to do much harm with a blade this short.
4. Liquids Exceeding a Certain Volume
Taking liquids onto a flight can be an especially frustrating experience due to the numerous restrictions on them. As of 2022, you can’t carry more than 100mL in a single container.
The TSA has made things extra complicated by banning containers with capacities exceeding 100mL. This means you wouldn’t be able to take a 150mL bottle of lotion onto a flight, even if it contains only 60mL of lotion.
You should note that there is one possible workaround for these liquid limits. Passengers are allowed to carry liquids in bottles with capacities up to 100mL each. They can also carry an unlimited number of these bottles as long as they all fit into a single clear plastic bag with a 1 liter capacity.
This means you could bring 500mL of apple juice onto a flight if it is divided into five 100mL containers that are then placed into a 1 liter capacity ziplock bag.
5. Powders Exceeding a Certain Volume
You might be surprised to learn that you cannot bring powders or powder-like substances in your hand luggage if they exceed a volume of 350mL . This restriction was added in 2018 and is meant to reduce the likelihood of people bringing explosive powders into the airplane cabin.
This means you will need to be careful about bringing items such as baby powder, spices, make-up, and even coffee onto a flight if they exceed the 350mL limit. However, any amount of powder can be tricky to bring on-board. So you might want to leave that container of allspice in your suitcase’s packing cubes.
6. Sporting Equipment
Sporting equipment is also prohibited in carry-on bags. This includes long objects such as baseball bats, hockey sticks, ski poles, golf clubs and hiking poles. Such objects aren’t allowed because they are oversized and could potentially be used as weapons.
Battery-powered personal transportation devices such as hoverboards also aren’t permitted due to the risk their batteries pose. Therefore it is best to keep such items in your checked 30 inch luggage piece.
Firearms aren’t allowed on planes for obvious safety reasons. However, you might not realize that this prohibition extends to firearm parts as well. The only firearm part you are allowed to bring on board are telescopic sights.
8. Gel-Type Candles
Candles wouldn’t normally appear to be a safety hazard on flights. However, you may be surprised to find out that you cannot carry gel-type candles in your carry-on bag. These candles are made from a gel-like substance and therefore fall under the restrictions placed on gels.
So if you intend to travel with gel-type candles, it is best to keep them in your checked large luggage. Wax candles are still permitted on carry-on bags, so you shouldn’t have any trouble flying with these.
9. Alcohol Exceeding a Certain Volume
Bringing alcohol onto a flight is generally permitted. However, there are special limits depending on the alcohol’s strength.
You can bring drinks such as beer and wine that are less than 24% alcohol by volume (ABV) as long as they meet the 100mL container requirement. As with other liquids, you can bring as many of these containers as you like if they all fit into a single 1 liter plastic page.
The same limits also apply to drinks with an ABV between 24% and 70% alcohol by volume. You should note that alcohol that exceeds 70% ABV is prohibited on flights. This is because alcohols with such high ABV are flammable and therefore pose a fire hazard.
Certain types of chemicals are also prohibited in your carry-on bag. This includes spray paint, spillable batteries, bleach, chlorine, and tear gas.
The term “chemicals” can be vague, as all products contain chemicals. Therefore, it is best to check with your airline before attempting to bring something like this in your carry-on bag.
Leave Some Items for Your Checked Baggage
As you can see, there are numerous items that aren’t permitted in your carry-on bag. So consider reviewing the above list before packing for your flight and heading to the airport.
If you’re looking for the perfect suitcase to fit your items into, check out the offerings from Royce and Rocket. Our suitcases are an excellent choice for anyone who wants to travel in style and make their journey easier.