Can I Take Prescription Medication On A Plane?

It is confusing to know what can be in carry-on luggage when traveling on a plane. Traveling with prescription medication is always a bit scary. If the medication you are concerned about is in liquid or gel form the Transportation Security Administration’s specification is 3 ounce containers in a one quart plastic bag. This includes liquid medications. You can, however, place any size of liquid or gel medication n your checked baggage. Do make sure your liquid bottles in checked on luggage are reasonable in size.

Medications on a Plane

It would be wise when carrying medications on a plane you retain the original labels on your prescription bottles. This is not absolutely necessary, but will make security screening much more efficient.

Use quart-sized clear resealable plastic bags and place liquid medications in this bag. Make sure they are in bottles less than 3 ounces. It is okay to mix your liquid medications and bills in the same bag as shampoos and other 3 ounce bottles.

If you want to save time in the security checkout, pack your medications whether in a plastic quart bag or not, on top of your carry-on baggage. You may be required to remove the plastic bag and give prescription bottles to the security agent.

Arrive early at the airport if you have medication in your luggage that you are nervous about carrying on the plane. Inspections can take time.

Let the screening agents know that you have prescriptions medications. If they are pills, liquids, gels or in any other form present the bag to the security agent so they can examine them.

Additional helps for airplane screening includes labeling all mediations bottles and containers. This will help TSA officers during the inspection and screening process. Most prescription containers will be x-rayed. TSA officers do not generally handle personal medications, but ask that prescription contents be available for a quick visual inspection.

Additional considerations when carrying medical prescriptions or requirements on a plane is to inform the security agent about any water, juice or liquid feeding supplements that you are carrying. Non-prescription items such as saline solutions or eye drops will also need to pass through the checkpoint. If you have medications that need to be on ice or cold and you are using ice or gel packs make sure these packs are frozen solid. Ice and gel packs that are melting must meet security three-ounce, one quart regulations.


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