It can feel like putting together a jigsaw puzzle when packing for a holiday, business trip, or obligatory family visit. How do you pack everything you need while remaining compliant with TSA regulations? Furthermore, injuries occur, people misplace their belongings, and items may be stolen—and airport transactions are costly. For a more enjoyable trip, plan ahead and pack these things carefully in your carry-on luggage.
A carry-on bag must be packed with skill. Smart travelers must strike a balance between airline and airport security standards, ensure that essential items are readily available, and consider all of the little details that will make their flight more comfortable. We’ve compiled a list of common carry-on bag disasters. Avoiding these will save you money, give you a better flight, and keep you out of trouble with airport security.
Things that SHOULD NOT be in your carry on bag
Liquids are permitted in small amounts in carry-on luggage. Liquids must be contained in bottles that are less than 3.4 ounces in size. A quart-size zip-top bag must contain all bottles. Per individual, only one bag is permitted. The solid law does not apply to breast milk, formula, or medicines. At the security checkpoint, they must announce themselves.
Both carry-on and checked baggage are forbidden from containing explosives, flammable liquids, or damaging substances.
- Equipment for Sports
As a carry-on item, most sporting equipment is restricted. All baseball bats, bows and arrows, cricket bats, hockey and lacrosse sticks, ski poles, golf clubs, pool cues, and spear weapons must be tested.
In carry-on luggage, tools with a length of seven inches or less, such as screwdrivers and wrenches, are permitted.
- Items for Self-Defense and Martial Arts
In carry-on luggage, self-defense and martial arts pieces are forbidden. Mace, pepper spray, throwing stars, night sticks, stun guns, brass knuckles, billy clubs, and other martial arts weapons are all included in checked luggage. A protection system must be installed on mace or pepper spray to avoid discharge during transport.
- Weapons and guns
A carry-on bag cannot contain any weapons. Both carry-on and checked baggage are banned from containing flares or gunpowder. If unloaded, packed in a secured, hard-sided case, and declared, firearms and flare guns are subject to inspection.
- Objects that are sharp
Box cutters, ice picks, knives, meat cleavers, razor blades, sabers, spears, and scissors with blades longer than 4 inches are among the sharp things forbidden from being carried in carry-on bags. Knives with a round blade, such as butter knives, are permitted.
Even if your luggage is completely within your airline’s weight and size restrictions, you may be forced to check it at the gate if the plane is overcrowded or the plane is smaller than scheduled. Make sure all truly essential—travel papers, expensive devices, and medicine—are stowed in the personal item you keep with you rather than the carry-on you gate-check. Also, make sure your carry-on has a baggage tag; gate-checked bags, like normally checked bags, can get mishandled, and you’ll want your contact details on the bag in case it gets lost.
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