Think you’re enough of a frequent flyer to know all of the rules from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA)? These five lesser-known TSA rules may surprise you—but knowing them could make your next trip through airport security smoother.
The 3-1-1 Rule Doesn’t Apply to Hand Saniztizer
Taking a long trip or just don’t have any travel-sized bottles of hand sanitizer? Due to the pandemic, the TSA is temporarily allowing one container of hand sanitizer that is 12 ounces or less in carry-on bags. However, if the hand sanitizer is over 3.4 ounces, you will need to take the oversized hand sanitizer out for additional screening.
Peanut Butter Is Subject to the 3-1-1 Rule
If you’re packing a peanut butter sandwich in your carry-on, no need to worry—you can bring peanut butter onboard as long as it’s less than 3.4 ounces. However, if you want to pack a full jar of Skippy, know that peanut butter falls under the “cream” category and is subject to the 3-1-1 rule. In addition to liquids, the TSA requires any substance that can be considered an aerosol, gel, cream, or paste, to be in a 3.4 ounce container or smaller.
You Don’t Have to Remove Your Liquids With TSA PreCheck
TSA PreCheck members don’t have to remove liquids, laptops, shoes, belts, or light jackets when going through security screening. (However, TSA PreCheck members do still need to abide by the 3-1-1 rule.)
You Can’t Fly With Strong Alcohol
Bringing home a powerful souvenir? If it’s alcohol over 70% ABV (140 proof), you’ll have to leave it behind. Only alcohol under 140 proof is allowed on planes. Regular-strength alcohol can be packed in a carry-on (but only in containers of 3.4 ounces or less).
Regular-sized bottles of alcohol that is under 140 proof can be checked, and there is no limit on how much alcohol you can bring if it’s under 48 proof (like beer and wine). There is a five liter limit for alcohol between 48 – 140 proof in checked bags, and it must be in unopened retail packaging.
Powders Will Have to Be Screened if You’re Flying Abroad
If you’re flying to the U.S. on an international flight, you might want to limit the amount of powder you’re packing. According to the TSA, “powder-like substances” in containers of 12 ounces or more packed in a carry-on may require additional screening. If the powder cannot be identified by security, they may not be allowed onboard. Powders in checked baggage are not subject to the same limits.
You Might Also Like:• Why Didn’t I Get TSA PreCheck on My Boarding Pass if I’m a PreCheck Member?
• 10 Things Not to Do at Airport Security
• Airport Security Frequently Asked Questions
• The 10 Places You’re Most Likely to be Pickpocketed
• How to Check for Hidden Cameras in Your Hotel Room or Vacation Rental
We hand-pick everything we recommend and select items through testing and reviews. Some products are sent to us free of charge with no incentive to offer a favorable review. We offer our unbiased opinions and do not accept compensation to review products. All items are in stock and prices are accurate at the time of publication. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.
Top Fares From
Today's Top Travel Deals
Brought to you by ShermansTravel
Peru: 7-Night Lima, Puerto Maldonado &...
Wisconsin Dells Water Park Resort w/Meals,...
Athens to Rome: Luxe, 7-Night Mediterranean...
Regent Seven Seas Cruisescruise $9699+