carry on bagage

Essential Guide: What Not to Pack in Your Carry-On


Traveling light with carry-on luggage is a smart way to avoid extra fees and luggage loss. However, it’s crucial to know what items are prohibited in your carry-on to ensure a smooth journey. This guide covers everything from the obvious, like swords, to the less apparent, such as scissors. We’ll explore the universal bans and specific restrictions to prevent any airport security hassles.

Quick Navigation

  • Carry-On Eligibility
  • Airline Carry-On Checks
  • Tips for Efficient Security Screening
  • Top 10 Prohibited Carry-On Items
  • Variations in International Airports
  • Differences Among Airlines Globally
  • Customs Regulations Abroad
  • Commonly Mistaken Carry-On Items

Carry-On Eligibility

Carry-on allowance varies by airline. While most offer complimentary carry-on space, budget airlines may charge extra. To avoid surprises, check your airline’s policy in advance.

Airline Carry-On Checks

Airlines generally don’t inspect carry-on content personally. However, during check-in, you’re required to confirm the absence of prohibited items. Airport security, like TSA, screens for these items using X-ray scanners and manual inspections, with non-compliance leading to penalties.

Tips for Efficient Security Screening

Security checks can be streamlined with a few tips. Keep liquids accessible for removal during screening, prepare to showcase electronic devices, and empty your pockets into your carry-on for a faster process.

Top 10 Prohibited Carry-On Items

Here’s a breakdown of common prohibited items:

  1. Firearms and Replicas: All forms, including toy guns, are banned.
  2. Flammables: Certain lighters, flammable liquids, and explosive toys are prohibited.
  3. Medical Supplies: Generally allowed, but some restrictions apply.
  4. Sports Equipment: Items resembling clubs or weapons are not allowed.
  5. Camping Gear: Restrictions apply to items like tent spikes and bear spray.
  6. Household Appliances: Most are allowed, but size restrictions apply.
  7. Tools: Permissible if under 7 inches, with some exceptions.
  8. Sharp Objects: Certain items like small scissors are allowed; others are banned.
  9. Food and Beverages: Follow TSA’s liquid rules; some food items may be restricted.
  10. Alcohol: Small bottles allowed but not for consumption on the plane.

International Airport Differences

Regulations can vary in international airports, especially concerning liquids. Be aware of these differences when making connections.

International Airline Differences

Each airline may have unique carry-on restrictions. Always check with your airline before flying.

International Customs Differences

Be mindful of items banned in your destination country, like certain medications, to avoid legal issues.

Commonly Mistaken Carry-On Items

Some items like peanut butter or magic 8-balls may seem permissible but are actually banned due to their consistency or composition.

Creating This Guide

Drawing from extensive travel experience and KAYAK’s expert resources, this guide aims to simplify your travel preparation.


Can You Bring Lighters on a Plane?

Yes, but restrictions apply, such as quantity limits.

Can You Bring a Razor on a Plane?

Disposable and electric razors are allowed, but blade safety is important.

Liquid Limits on Planes

Liquids must be in 3.4-ounce containers within a quart-size bag.

Bringing Cologne on a Plane

Cologne is permitted following the 3.4-ounce container rule.

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