In the wake of the events of 9/11, the Transportation Security Administration has issued guidelines on permitted and prohibited items for flights. These safety guidelines were issued as a deterrent for attempts to bring dangerous materials on board. Here are some of the guidelines issued that require compliance. Should there be any issue regarding materials brought on board, airline security has the right to refuse carriage of such materials or even refuse the boarding of the passenger in possession of prohibited items.
• The 3-1-1 Carry On Rule. Liquids in the toiletries in your carry-on case or in your checked-in luggage must not exceed 3 liquid oz. You are also required to place all of these toiletries in a single quart-size zip-top bag weighing no more than 3 oz. This is important, as it allows you to simply open up the zip-top for ease of inspection when security personnel inquire about any declaration that you make.
• Wrapped gifts. It is best not to wrap items that you are giving as gifts in your carry on or checked-in baggage. Should you bring wrapped presents, airport security personnel are mandated to unwrap the gifts to check their contents. The best way to avoid the hassle is to ship wrapped presents ahead or just wrap your presents when you reach your destination.
• Food items on board. Food in liquid form, in aerosol cans or in gel containers should be placed in your checked-in baggage. Pies and cakes can be declared as carry-on items although they are still subject to screening.
Prohibited Items on Carry-on Luggage
Carry-on luggage includes bags or cases that you bring into the passenger area of the plane. This luggage must be stowed in the overhead compartment of your seat. The articles identified below are not allowed in your carry-on luggage.
• Make-up and toiletries. All creams and lotions, including first-aid creams, ointments, topical or rash creams and ointments, suntan lotions and moisturizers, should be packed in checked-in luggage. Bug sprays, deodorants in spray or gel form, bubble bath gels or bath balls, bath oils and moisturizers also need to be packed in checked-in luggage. Medication of all types needs to be packed in checked-in luggage. Hair styling gels, hair sprays of all types, hair tools such as detanglers or straighteners, lip gels, gloss or liquids, liquid foundations and soaps, facial cleansers and makeup removers, mascara, nail polish and removers, perfumes, colognes and toothpaste need to be packed in your checked-in luggage in the luggage compartment of the plane.
• Food and drinks. All types of beverages must be included in your checked-in baggage. Gel-based sports supplements, jellos, puddings and other gel-like food substances such as yogurts also need to be checked in you’re your luggage. An exception is made for medications, baby formula, baby food, breast milk and juice in reasonable quantities. These items are separate from your zip-top bag and must be declared and inspected by security personnel.
• Other personal Items. Baby items with gel or liquids, toys with gels inside, gel candles, and gel shoe inserts may be carried in through checked-in baggage.
• Other objects. Box cutters, ice axes or picks, knives, meat cleavers, razor type blades, sabers and swords, and scissors with blades measuring over four inches need to be declared and packed in checked-in luggage. Do note that these sharp objects need to be securely wrapped to prevent injury to baggage handlers and inspectors.
• Sporting goods. Bats, clubs, bow and arrows, hockey, lacrosse and pool sticks, ski poles and spear guns need to be included in checked-in baggage.
• Guns and ammunition. BB guns, pellet guns and compressed air guns, firearms and its accessory parts, realistic replicas and starter pistols need to be checked in with the airline. These items need to be unloaded, fully declared, packed in locked, hard-sided gun cases and duly accompanied by ownership paperwork.
• Tools and other equipment. Axes and hatchets, cattle prods, crowbars and hammers are to be contained in checked-in luggage. Power or hand-driven saws and drills, and tools more than seven inches in length are to be included in checked-in luggage.
• Self-defense paraphernalia. Billy clubs, black jacks, brass knuckles, kubatons, night sticks, nunchakus, stun guns and throwing stars are allowed on the plane as long as they are contained in checked-in luggage and duly declared by the passenger.
Prohibited Materials on the Plane
Based on existing Transportation Security Association guidelines, the following items are prohibited from being carried onto the plane. If airport security personnel finds such items, the said items will be confiscated immediately and the passenger is subject to severe sanctions for attempting to bring prohibited material into a commercial airplane.
• In the category of guns and firearms, flare guns, gun lighters and gunpowder are prohibited from being carried by a passenger onto an airplane.
• In the category of explosive materials, blasting caps, dynamites, fireworks and any form of flares, hand grenades, plastic explosives and replicas of explosives are prohibited from being carried onto an airplane, whether in a carry-on bag or in checked-in luggage.
• In the category of flammable items, aerosols, except for personal care or as toiletries, fuels, gasoline, gas torches, lighter fluid, lighters except when they are not fueled, strike anywhere matches, turpentine and paint thinner and realistic replicas of incendiaries are prohibited.
• As for disabling chemicals and other dangerous items, chlorine for pools and spas, compressed gas cylinders, liquid bleach, spillable batteries except for wheelchair use, spray paint and tear gas are disallowed on the plane.
In compliance with the guidelines laid down by the Transportation Security Association, the following items are allowed on carry-on baggage on commercial flights.
• Medications, baby formula and food, breast milk in reasonable quantities of juice can be contained in carry-on luggage.
• Empty camelbacks, backpacks and water bottles are also allowed.
• Cigar cutters, corkscrews, cuticle cutters, eyeglass repair tools, eyelash curlers, knitting and crochet needles, nail clippers, nail files, personal toiletries including aerosols in limited quantities, safety and disposable razors, scissors with blunt tips or with pointed tips no longer than four inches, toy robots and weapons, tweezers and umbrellas. Walking canes are allowed as long as they have been properly inspected and yield no concealed items underneath.
• Special needs devices such as blood sugar treatment liquids or gels up to 8 oz in quantity, Braille Note Taker with Slate and Stylus and other Augmentation Devices are allowed. Diabetes-related supplies and equipment after inspection such as insulin dispensing products, vials of insulin, jet injectors or infusers or preloaded syringes are allowed, plus an unlimited quantity of unused syringes with insulin, lancets, blood glucose meters and the test strips, insulin pump and supplies. Also allowed are nitroglycerine pills or sprays for medical use and ostomy scissors. Prescription medication should be labeled with the patient name, which should match the name on the passenger’s ticket. Prosthetic devices, together with their appliances, are also allowed as long as the proper authentication is carried along.
• Electronic devices such as camcorders and camera equipment, laptop computers and notebooks, mobile phones, pagers and personal data assistants are allowed in carry-on baggage. Do inquire as to the appropriate use of these electronic devices during the flight.