Safety and security agencies such as the Transportation Security Administration or TSA always try to make the passengers’ journey smooth, secure, and stress-free. For this, they create item-specific rules. The same is also followed by almost every airline. When it comes to sharp items like knives, there are some regulations. So, if you doubt whether you can bring a knife on a plane, then you must know the applicable rules. In addition to these, country and region-specific rules should also be looked at.
What are the TSA Rules for Knives on Planes?
Based on the TSA’s latest rules, you can bring sharp objects such as knives with you. However, these are only allowed in your checked luggage and with certain conditions. You cannot travel with them in your carry-on bag.
Can You Have a Knife in a Checked Bag?
Yes, knives can be brought in checked luggage on an aircraft. However, the rules may vary from one nation/state to another. One more notable point that you must keep in your mind is – you can travel with certain types of knives only.
Some more details have been listed below:
- Pocket knives
- Antique knives
- Decorative knives
- Kitchen knives
- Fixed-blade knives (the length should be less than 4-6 inches)
- Plastic-made toy knives
- Damascus knives
- Balisong trainer squiddy knives
What Knives You Cannot Check-in with Your Luggage?
Some types of knives fall into the category of illegal objects. It depends on several factors that include the blade’s length, design, etc. In case a customer decides to bring a restricted or illegal object on a plane or in checked baggage, the agents of TSA may stop him/her from boarding the flight.
When it comes to knives, the types that are strictly prohibited include the ones listed below:
- Flick knives
- Spring-loaded knives
- Push daggers
- Historical daggers
- Some types of swords
- Throwing knives
- Death or throwing stars
- Knives that look like a different item i.e. comb, pen, etc.
- Butterfly knives
- Fixed-blade knives with a blade length of more than 4-6 inches
Can You Take a Pocket Knife on a Plane?
Yes, you can bring a pocket knife on an airplane. When it comes to the types, it includes multi-tools, small, Swiss Army knives, and so on. Please keep in mind that you cannot keep objects that are easy to open or operate. For example, knives with a spring or button to open will not be permitted.
Can You Take a Knife Set in Checked Luggage?
According to the latest TSA rules for sharp objects, you will be allowed to take the knife set in your checked luggage. It includes long meat knives and large meat cleavers.
Can You Bring a Knife in a Checked Bag Internationally?
In addition to the rules of the TSA, you must read the country-specific regulations before traveling with a knife. Since rules for these may vary from one nation to another, you may end up in great problems if you do not abide by them.
Some details have been given below:
- When you are flying within the United States, you can bring all sorts of knives.
- But they should be in the checked luggage only.
- Apart from round-bladed butter and plastic toy knives, you cannot bring any other type in your carry-on bag.
- Knives can be kept in hand luggage as well as checked baggage.
- However, the length should not be more than 6 cm.
- In this category, items such as pocket knives, multi-tools, nail clippers, and small scissors will be permitted.
- But knives more than 6 cm can only be brought into your checked luggage.
- Please note that concealed, push-button, and items resembling knives are completely banned.
- In addition to the TSA terms, you must also follow the regulations of the UK Flight Authorities.
- As per their rules, you can bring knives that are below 6 cm in length.
- In case the items are over 6 cm, you can keep them in your checked luggage.
India, China, Australia, and Europe
- The rules of these countries are similar to the ones you see in the U.S.
- It means you cannot bring knives in a carry-on bag.
- But yes, you can have them in your checked baggage.
- In case you have any doubts, just consult with the respective airline or country’s consulate.
- Knives (including blades) that are shorter than 2.36 inches or 6 cm will be allowed in the:
- carry-on bag
- or hand luggage.
- For items with a length over this, they will be permitted in the checked baggage only.
How to Pack a Knife in Checked Baggage?
Airport Security asks every passenger to secure the knives in their checked baggage in the safest manner possible. Since the edges of these objects are too sharp, they can hurt the airline authorities or damage other items available in the surroundings.
To pack knives properly in this baggage, you can follow one of the following methods:
- Always use cardboard pieces to secure the knife’s blade. This way the endpoints will not poke through.
- You can also utilize tape and paper to secure the knife’s sharp edge. Just wrap multiple layers of napkins or paper around the blade and cover it with masking or duct tape.
- A fabric or leather holster can also be purchased to keep the knife safely in the checked luggage.
- Lastly, you can get a box to place the sharp knives in it. The best option is a fabric roll box for this purpose.
Related: Can You Bring Scissors on a Plane
In a Nutshell
Knives are sharp objects. Therefore, these items are subject to additional security checks and rules. Hence, it is suggested to check with your desired airline and nation to have a clearer picture of the rules and restrictions. Besides, do not forget to read and understand the TSA’s regulations to bring knives on a plane.
Frequently Asked Questions
With reference to the TSA rules, you can bring knives on a plane. But you will not be allowed to have them in your carry-on bag except for the plastic toy and butter knives with round edges.
Yes, knives over 6 cm of blade length can be packed in your checked baggage.
Sharp-edge items including knives are not allowed to be kept in your carry-on bag. You can keep plastic and butter knives in the carry-on bag.
The rules of the TSA let passengers bring pocket knives in their checked baggage.
Kitchen knives including long meat knives and large meat cleavers are allowed on a plane.
While heading to Canada, in your hand luggage, you can keep knives below the length of 6 cm.
Yes, pocket knives are allowed but the length should not be more than 6 cm.
There is only one rule – the length. The pocket knife should be shorter than 6 cm.
No, not all types of these objects are permitted on a plane.
There are certain types that are strictly prohibited. This includes:
Death or throwing stars
Certain types of swords