Can You Bring Alcohol On A Plane?
Bringing home a bottle of wine from a vineyard you visited during your travels is the perfect souvenir to share with friends or family. But, when compared to a keepsake you pick up at a gift shop, packing alcohol for a flight is a bit more involved than just tucking it inside your carry-on bag.
If you’re wondering, “Can I bring alcohol on a plane?” Rest assured that the answer is yes, you can fly with alcohol. You just need to take a few extra steps. Here’s everything you need to know about packing alcohol for a flight.
How Much Alcohol Can You Bring on a Plane?
When it comes to packing your carry-on luggage and clearing TSA checkpoints, the same 3-1-1 rule that applies to toiletries also applies to liquor. You can pack small bottles of alcohol that are 3.4 ounces or less in a clear, quart-sized bag. If you have already passed through the security checkpoints and decide to buy alcohol at a duty-free store inside the airport, make sure to keep your receipt and don’t remove the bottle from the sealed bag provided at checkout.
When you’re packing alcohol in your checked bag, you are limited to five liters of alcohol. For reference, a standard bottle of wine is 750 milliliters, which means you can fit about six bottles. For liquor connoisseurs, the alcohol by volume percentage also becomes a factor. The TSA rule of thumb is that all alcohol must be less than 140-proof (70% ABV).
Whether you’re packing mini bottles in your carry-on or you’re bringing back a case of beer in your checked bag, make sure the alcohol is unopened and in its original packaging so you don’t raise any red flags with the authorities.
How Can You Put Alcohol in a Checked Bag?
You certainly don’t want to arrive at your destination and find that the entire contents of your suitcase have been dyed wine red because you didn’t take the proper precautions. Whether you’re packing liquor or wine and beer, store it carefully to prevent breakage. Do so by wrapping clothing, like scarves or sweaters, around the bottles to keep them from clanking into one another during transport.
Can You Drink Your Own Alcohol On a Plane?
The short answer is a resounding “no.” U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations state that drinking your own alcohol on a commercial flight is prohibited, and those who don’t comply could face upwards of $40,000 in fines. If a drink helps to calm nerves before hopping on a plane, you can visit a bar at the airport before boarding or purchase mini bottles of wine and beer or mixed cocktails while in-flight, as long as they’re served by a flight attendant.
Don’t make a simple packing mistake and run the risk of having a high-price bottle confiscated at the airport. By following these steps for transporting alcohol on an aircraft, you can return home—spirits in tow—without a hitch.