Can You Carry Aerosols in Checked Baggage?

Liquids in hand luggage

Ready and eager to travel, but not sure if you can take aerosols in checked baggage? It’s not unusual for people to worry about taking their hair sprays, sun block, hair mousse and deodorants on board an airplane. Here’s what you should know about aerosol restrictions and how to answer the question: can you carry aerosols in checked baggage?

The Rules for Carrying Aerosols on an Airplane

According to the Civil Aviation Authority, no liquids in containers larger than 100ml (3oz) are permitted on UK flights in hand luggage unless they were purchased after the security check point. The same applies to aerosols. So, if you need to carry aerosols on board your flight, such as deodorant or hair grooming products, you should buy them at the duty-free shops after you’ve passed through security, and then store them in your hand luggage.

Airlines and border security agencies are legally entitled to deny you passage unless you surrender certain items. Generally, you can only carry aerosols and liquids if they all fit into a single, resealable bag of approximately 20cm x 20cm.

How to Carry Aerosols in Checked Baggage

If you have larger aerosols you can’t carry with you on board, you have the option to place them in the airplane hold inside your checked luggage. But there are some conditions that apply to all hold luggage aerosols:

  • They must contain non-flammable and non-toxic gas;
  • They must be for personal use (sporting or home use volumes);
  • Individual containers can’t weigh more than 0.5kg/ 0.5L / 1.10lbs;
  • They can’t weigh more than 2kg/ 2L/ 4.40lbs in total (4 x 500ml max.);
  • They must have caps or some other covering that prevents accidental release.

Exceptions to the Rules on Carrying Aerosols

If your aerosol is over 100ml in total volume (half-empty cans and sprays in larger containers are not permitted) you must store it in your checked baggage. There are, however, a few exceptions to the rules:

  • Breast milk and baby formula are permitted in larger quantities, although your baby must be travelling with you at the time;
  • Essential medicines, including inhalers, if accompanied by supporting documentation;
  • Oxygen cylinders required for your health, although you should always contact the airline before travel to confirm specific rules for compliance.

If you’ve been denied boarding due to hold luggage aerosols and you feel that the airline overstepped its boundaries, keep in mind that you may be entitled to compensation. It only takes minutes to look up your right to compensation from low-cost airlines and other air carriers.

If you’re about to fly and you’re unsure if you can carry aerosols in checked baggage or hand luggage, please contact your airline prior to flying. If you’ve contacted your airline but you’re still unsure, it’s best to err on the side of caution and either leave the item behind or ask for the airline’s approval at the airport, prior to security checks.

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