12 Items that you Must Never Carry on your Flight

In our previous articles, we have mentioned about the various things you will have to carry when you travel. But have you ever wondered what are the items that you would not be requiring? or what are the items that you shouldn’t be carrying on your flight?
Well, this article tells you exactly that. So read further to know what all items you could avoid packing in your luggage.


1) Liquids over 3.4 ounces or 100ml

The liquids restriction is pretty universal nowadays, though enforcement may vary. To be on the safe side, stick to the rule: all liquids must be in containers of no more than 3.4 ounces or 100ml, and all containers must fit in a clear, one quart sized zip top plastic bag.

You can still travel carry-on only with liquids. A 100ml bottle of shampoo just lasted me approximately 40 showers. Buy travel sized containers and fill them with shampoo, shower gel, and any other products you want to bring on your trip. Buy things like toothpaste in travel sizes.

2) Shoes that hurt your feet

That pair of wedges that always cause you to roll your ankle? Those lace-up pumps that rub uncomfortably against your skin? Leave ’em behind 100 percent of the time. We promise you’ll thank us when you’re schlepping through the Marais.

3) Meat, fruit, vegetables, and other agricultural products

When traveling internationally, most countries prohibit you from bringing in meats, fruit, vegetables, plants, and other agricultural products. If you want to bring an apple as a snack, just make sure you eat it on the plane. Otherwise it will be confiscated on arrival, and you could find yourself facing an angry border agent.

Certain countries, like Australia and New Zealand, are even more strict and won’t allow things like wooden souvenirs you may have picked up somewhere else.

4) Nail polish

Ok, bring the nail polish (in your liquids bag) if you want, but please don’t paint your nails in flight. This falls under the disrespectful smell category.

5) Too much denim

Your favorite baby blues don’t dirty that easily ― and experts actually recommend minimal washing (once a month is ideal). This means you can get away with packing just one or two pairs and rewearing from day to day.

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6) Sharp objects

This one should be self-explanatory, but sharp objects are prohibited in carry-on luggage because they could be used as a weapon. If you simply must bring a knife, box cutter or sword on your trip, it must be packed in your checked luggage. Scissors that are less than 4 inches long, like nail scissors, are generally allowed by TSA, but since the final decision rests with the agent, just be aware that they could confiscate it.

Rules in other countries can be different from those in the US, so check it out before you fly from somewhere else. For example, many countries state that scissors are only permitted if they are shorter than 6 centimeters from the pivot point. That’s only 2.36 inches, shorter than what TSA allows in the US.

7) Perfume

We’re all glad you care about how you smell, but perfume can be unpleasant and bothersome to many people. Some are even allergic. Wait until you reach your destination to spray on the perfume, that way your seatmates can breathe easy during the flight.

8) Toiletries

Hotels ― heck, even some Airbnbs ― provide shampoo, conditioner, bar soap, lotion, razors, mouthwash and more. Call ahead to double check what they offer (and while you have them on the phone, the brand they carry), then whittle your products to the essentials.

9) Guidebooks

Guidebooks can be really helpful, but chances are you don’t need to bring that heavy book with you on the trip. Either rip out the pages you think you’ll need, photocopy them, or take pictures with your phone of the pages you need. Better yet, buy digital copies for your Kindle or other e-reader.

10) Hairstyling tools

Same deal: Call ahead to be sure the hotel has them, and if the answer is yes, leave your heavy hair dryer at home. (FYI, more and more hotels are letting you borrow complimentary flat irons, so be sure to ask about that, too.)

11) Tools

Most, but not all, tools are prohibited in carry-on luggage. If you’re planning on bringing your tools with you, you will most likely need to put them in checked luggage. You might not think of a hammer or drill bits as weapons, but TSA’s opinion differs.

12) Lighters, matches and other flammable items

I think we can all agree that starting a fire on the airplane is not a good idea. Please leave all flammable chemicals and items at home. If you feel you must have fireworks, bleach or paint thinner on your vacation, buy them when you arrive. These and other flammable and explosive items are prohibited in both carry-on and checked luggage. Lots of camping gear, like camping stoves, is considered flammable as well.

Check with TSA and the airline for rules and restrictions. If possible, get the equipment you need once you arrive to avoid the hassle. TSA does allow one book of safety matches in your carry-on, but matches are not allowed in your checked luggage.

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Navaneetha Suresh

Navaneetha Suresh

Navaneetha, commonly known as "nav", loves to read, play badminton, play the keyboard and sing but when she's not doing any of those, she loves to write. What started as a high school hobby to write is now her ongoing passion.

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