How to Pack Liquids and Gels for a Plane


How to Pack Liquids and Gels for a Plane. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) implemented new rules for carrying liquids onto a plane after finding liquid explosives on a flight. Following these guidelines can make the difference in boarding or missing a flight.

Things You'll Need

  • Quart size zip-seal bag
  • 3 oz. containers

Follow the TSA's 3-1-1 rule. This means liquids must be in containers of 3 oz. or smaller, packed in a 1-qt. clear plastic zip seal bag. Only one bag is allowed for each passenger.

Know the exceptions to the rule. You can take baby formula, breast milk or baby foods in reasonable quantities over 3 oz.; medications in aerosol, liquid or gel forms; and water, juice or other liquids needed because of a medical condition. However, you must declare your exception to the TSA officer during screening.

Leave professionally printed labels on all medications and liquids to avoid suspicion.

Package food items, such as jams, sauces and dips, in 3 oz. containers and pack them with your toiletries in the zippered plastic bag.

Pack snow globes, lava lamps and other liquid-filled gifts in your checked luggage. Don't wrap gifts prior to screening. These may be unwrapped for inspection by TSA agents.

Forget taking flammable liquids, other than hair spray or other personal care items properly packaged in 3 oz. containers inside a sealed plastic bag. Don't pack lighter fluids, paint thinners, gas torches and any flammable liquid fuels in either carry-on or checked luggage.

Purchase food and beverage items along with personal care items that you want to take on the plane in the boarding area.

Tips & Warnings

  • Buy travel size toiletries to pack for your plane trip or purchase new supplies when you get to your destination.
  • Don't try to take a partially filled bottle larger than 3 ounces onboard. Ensure any containers are not over 3 oz.

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