What are the objects you CANNOT carry on a flight in cabin baggage?

Are you a first-time flyer? Welcome on board! But, did you know that there are objects that are forbidden in your cabin baggage? Not sure what they are? Continue to read on, and by the time you complete reading this article, I assure that you will be fully aware of these objects.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Knowledge is power. Sometimes while traveling by flight, I’ve found innocent passengers leaving their newly bought items, in airport security room or dustbin. This happens almost in all airports both domestic and international. Here is a list of airports around the world and the airport codes. This also has been the frequently asked questions by many travelers in various websites such as Quora, Answerbag, Yahoo! Answers, Blurt it, Anybody Out There, WikiAnswers, FunAdvice, Askville, Ask Me Help Desk, Answer Bank, AskDeb, Able2Know, Mahalo Answers, Aardvark, Twitter, and Friendfeed. There are also certain Hotels that don’t allow certain dangerous items into their hotel. Frequent fliers don’t have these problems. Continue reading to be acquainted with this information.

1. Fireworks

Unfortunately, it is dangerous to carry crackers on board as it explodes in the pressurized cabin. If the crackers explode in a pressurized environment, its impact is multiplied due to shock waves and can even cause damage to the fuselage. The fuselage is the technical term used for the aircraft body where we as passengers are seated. It includes cockpit and cabin and cargo. For the safe breathing of passengers, normally the aircrafts flying at higher altitude are pressurized because oxygen at higher altitude is rarified. It is not that the entire fuselage is pressurized. Some areas such as landing gear well are not pressurized. During the season of Diwali, Fireworks, also called as Crackers are on the move from one place to another.

Little Physics from your school

I wish to recall your knowledge of basic physics. We have studied that when altitude increases pressure and temperature decreases. So when aircraft fly at about 40,000 feet there will be lesser oxygen. This level of oxygen is not adequate for passengers to breath normally. Similarly, temperature also gets drastically reduced. A human being requires 14.7 psi of air to breathe normally and behave with a tolerance limit according to body type. At mean sea level  (MSL), there is pressure prevailing in the atmosphere at the rate of 14.7 psi, but at 40,000 feet the pressure prevailing is approximately 2 psi. So the body does not get adequate oxygen and becomes prone to Hypoxia. Human survival is possible approximately up to 14,000 feet without external supply of oxygen. So, humans surviving at 40,000 feet is next to impossible! Have you played in the ice at Rohtang pass which is situated at 13,500 feet, the highest road pass in India?

TripsAndTents.com arranges tour packages to Rohtang pass either by bus or bullet motorcycle (Royal Enfield) or by flight up to Kullu. Helicopter trips are not favorable as the climatic condition is unpredictable. For more information, visit https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rohtang_Pass.

For more information, drop your mail id here.

Here are some of the best flight offers to reach Rohtang pass:

To reach there, one must go to Manali, get assimilate by staying there for at least a day, and then proceed to Rohtang pass. It is not advisable to go without a break at Manali due to the depleted oxygen levels. Moreover, one cannot play for a long time in Rohtang pass,  when playing at such high altitude. Due to rarefied Oxygen at higher altitude, one gets tired quickly and may even faint to death.

This is a serious diversion while discussing on carrying crackers on board a flight.

But, this would be an eye-opener on how important Oxygen supply is to the body at higher altitudes. To supply oxygen into the cabin, aircraft engines pump air into the cabin throughout the flight and this activity is called pressurization. In a pressurized environment, an explosion will have a serious effect as it can disintegrate the aircraft body, i.e.,  the fuselage.

To avoid such damages, explosives such as crackers are not permitted.

2. Magnets

Sometimes magnets distract the navigational equipment, such as radio aids, laser gyros, GPS, etc., and hence these will be challenged by the flight crew if found in your possession. Laser gyro uses electronic signal to calculate the position of aircraft in synchronization with radio signal called as radio position. This radio position will be seriously affected hence carriage of magnets, electromagnets are not permitted. Observe the disturbance by keeping a magnet near your TV. The disturbances it causes to Television and in the electronic signal system of aircraft is similar. Such erroneous signals drift the aircraft from its planned airway. Aircraft is operated from one point to another with the help of Global position system which uses electronic signals to calculate the position in latitude, longitude, the rate of displacement and height. Since GPS is the latest invention the older aircraft are equipped with Laser gyro to compute its directional and vertical position. Read More

Radio operated toys such as remote controlled toys for children, walkie-talkie, drone, etc., are prohibited.

3. Breathing Apparatus

Cylinders of compressed air or Oxygen, chemical Oxygen generators or refrigerated liquefied Oxygen are called as breathing apparatus. Oxygen is a silent killer though it is used for saving many lives. Unprotected or unapproved oxygen cylinders are not allowed on board.  Oxygen cylinder may burst due to pressure variation and disintegrate the fuselage. When airlines insist sick passengers to prebook oxygen cylinders at a cost, it appears inhuman. It is not that the airlines wanted to make money out of such sale.

The security staff and the crew know that airworthy certified oxygen cylinders can withstand the pressure difference. SAFE FLIGHT FOR ALL, not only for the sick or non-ambulatory passenger, is the reason these are not allowed in the flight.

4. Household Goods

Solvent-based paint, adhesives, polishes, aerosols, bleach, corrosive oven or drain cleaners, ammunition, matches, etc., are also concerns for safety and hence should not be carried on board.  These highly flammable substances may catch fire due to change in temperature.

5. Swimming Pool Chemicals

Chemicals used to clean swimming pools contain oxidizing or corrosive substances. Spillage in an aircraft can weaken the fuselage structure resulting in breakage of the fuselage. This is a slow poison to the aircraft.

6. Mercury

Is Mercury a liquid or solid?  It is a debatable question, but it also does the same damage similar to acids. If mercury is spilled, it disintegrates into small balls and runs into cavities. It easily can go into the honeycomb structure of fuselage alloy and weaken the structure by corroding the contact area.

For more information, visit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alcohol_thermometer

7. Micro Torches

Micro Torches and utility lighters contain inflammable gas and are equipped with an electronic starter. Larger torches consist of a torch head (often with a self-igniting switch) attached to a cylinder of flammable gas.

8. Miscellaneous items

Other items such as unprocessed films, scuba diving equipment’s, camping stove, adhesives paint, aerosol, strike anywhere matchbox, dry ice more than a specific quantity and the list goes on.

9. Sample for Testing

Blood samples may contain the infectious substances, which when mixed in the air can contaminate the cabin air.

10. Lithium-Ion Battery

Lithium Battery may capture fire due to thermal runaway. To douse off the fire there are no extinguishers carried on board. The effective extinguisher in such case of fire is dry chemical powder. Dry chemical fire extinguishers weaken the fuselage by corrosion.

11. Pyro Techniques

Pyro means the use of sight through the light. These flames are used in film shooting to blast the vehicle from where the hero comes out, romantically with the heroine in the midst of flames.

Pyro techniques are normally used for signaling from the lost or missing airplane or ship in order to seek help, as in the case of SOS. As the flames come out of such equipment with pressure it can burn fellow passengers or can even damage fuselage or cause uncontrolled cabin fire.

Innocent passengers may carry the objects mentioned above.

But, the list of items banned on board a flight is exhaustive.

Law Suit

You should be aware of the legal rules of carrying such dangerous goods and its consequences.

The transportation of dangerous goods is controlled and governed by a variety of regulatory regimes, at both the national and international levels. Prominent regulatory frameworks for the transportation of dangerous goods include the United Nations Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods, ICAO’s Technical Instructions, and IATA’s Dangerous Goods Regulations. Collectively, these regulatory regimes mandate the means by which dangerous goods are to be handled, packaged, labeled and transported.

In India, any willful violation of carrying dangerous goods invites a penalty of USD 15,000 or 1 million Indian Rupee (INR 10 lakhs). Besides the penalty, a violator may be subjugated to a two years’ imprisonment, as per DGCA CAR. It is similar to the punishment when one misbehaves with an airline staff.

Regulatory frameworks incorporate comprehensive classification systems of hazards to provide a taxonomy of dangerous goods.

Classification of Dangerous Goods

Classification of dangerous goods is broken down into nine classes according to the type of dangerous materials or items present, click here for more information.


Flammable Gases

Flammable Liquids

Flammable Solids

Oxidizing Substances

Toxic & Infectious Substances

Radioactive Material


Miscellaneous Dangerous Goods

There are labels to identify the classification. https://www.iata.org/publications/store/Pages/dgr-hazard-labels.aspx

Transportation of dangerous goods by air using passenger flight is risky

Need for transportation of Dangerous Goods

Did you notice why such dangerous articles have to be transported by air?

The need for transportation of dangerous goods arises because of socio-economic requirements and sometimes, lifesaving drugs are getting transported. Radioactive material is mostly transported to treat cancer patients. Time constraint is critical, in saving the life of the patient, hence air transportation of dangerous goods becomes a necessity.

Did you know that the aircraft itself is an assembly of dangerous goods? Fuel, oxygen cylinders, nitrogen filled tires, pyro techniques, and pressurized cartridges are carried on board but stored securely with all precautions.

While transporting radioactive materials to treat cancer patients,  the transport index decides the quantity to carry. Higher transport index not compatible with cargo size may leak radiation into a cabin.

Carriage of Pistols, knife also are banned subject to regulations. There are 2 categories of items checked for its presence by various agencies.

  1. Dangerous Goods
  2. Security related items.

Dangerous goods are governed by ICAO Technical Instruction Annex 18 whereas Security related items are governed through ICAO Annex 17. Some items such as matchbox carried on a person permissible under dangerous goods regulation shall not be allowed by ICAO Annex 17.

Any other issues

Are these dangerous goods mentioned above the only banned objects from carrying on board a flight? The answer is NO.

Once there was a passenger stranded in Singapore as he could not carry the 49 inches LED TV he bought at Singapore during his visit. He was tempted to buy the TV in Singapore, but this passenger did not check with the airline policy in carrying fragile items. Bigger the LED TV size the more fragile it becomes. Should an airline carry such items, utmost care is required not only while loading and unloading but also in cruise. The passenger may ask for compensation for breakage observed at the destination.

For customer satisfaction, many airlines have a policy in carrying such articles depending upon the size of the item and the ability to accommodate in their cargo compartment. Please don’t be tempted to buy such items during a visit to a foreign country due to a better price. Eventually, you may end up paying more toward transport.

It is always a good practice to scan through the airline website before you pack your bag for travel.

Some passengers wish to carry furniture when they visit a different country. There may not be the required space in the cargo and hence face problems. Eventually, you may have to make use of cargo planes and pay a heavy cost for importing, as the duty price is high.


The interesting part is about the carriage of alcoholic beverages!!!

Yes, one can carry 5 liters of alcoholic beverages during your travel.

Hope this article clarifies many of your doubts. Should you require more clarifications, kindly post your travel related queries to mail@crosskonnection.com and we shall be glad to clarify all your queries.

Wish you Safe Journey! https://TripsAndTents.com – Travel Simplified

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