Can you bring medicine on a plane? A lot of people are unsure about whether they can bring their medication on a plane when traveling. However, it is possible to bring medicine on a plane, but it’s important to be familiar with the rules and instructions to have a hassle-free travel experience.
While packing luggage with all your necessary items for travel, it is beneficial to be aware of the regulations set by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). Despite the fact that you might not be carrying all the stuff you wanted, some items may be crucial for you like your medicines.
Before packing your favorite or daily-use products in bags, you must follow the TSA’s guidelines and proceed with a tension-free air journey.
Be it your tablets to stay relieved from pain or any other medication prescribed by a doctor, you would surely not like to miss your health routine. Well, you could also be taking vitamins on a daily basis.
If you wish to know the instructions related to taking medication on plane, you should read this guide and pack your bags accordingly.
TSA recognizes the need for travelers to go as per their medical regime. It allows you to bring medicines on a plane, but it suggests you maintain their labeling. This makes the screening process easier and also enables the swift movement of queues.
Whether you want to bring pills (solids) like Nitroglycerine, Advil, Ibuprofen, Tylenol, etc., or liquid medicines, you can easily place them in your carry-on bag and/or checked luggage. You are also permitted to keep a pill cutter in your bags.
However, it is beneficial to place them in your carry-on in such a way that you can easily take them out for separate X-ray screening at the security checkpoint.
Here are the types of medications allowed by the TSA on a plane. Make sure to read the related instructions and bring your medicines accordingly.
Pills come under the TSA solid medication rules. As long as you have pills or tablets, there are no such restrictions or limitations, be it hand luggage or checked baggage. To make things simpler, you must mark the medicine or label it and let the TSA staff know about it when you go through security.
At the same time, you must also keep in mind to gather information about the laws of the specific state you are visiting. This is because you might be asked to show the prescription at the destination airport.
Such items must be declared during the screening process and they must undergo verification, as they may contain explosive components. Since the TSA is concerned about the safety and security of passengers, the officers may get deeper into the screening aspects.
As you may already know, the TSA liquid medication rules allows passengers to take liquid items, but only as per the 3-1-1 liquids rule. You can bring the approved liquid items poured into containers that are not more than 3.4 ounces or 100 ml. These containers need to be packed in a transparent quart-sized bag, which is then placed in your hand luggage.
Liquids Medication Rule Exemption – Criterion 1
Nevertheless, flying with liquid medication is also easy, as these medicines are considered medically necessary liquids by the TSA. So, it permits you to bring liquid medicines more than the 3.4 ounces limit, reasonably though, in your carry-on.
But, before the screening of your belongings begins, you should let the TSA officer know that you have medically essential liquids. Then you need to separate them from other items. Even if you have related products like syringes, frozen packs, etc., required with your liquid medication, you need to take them out as well. It would be great to label all the items for the understanding of TSA officers and enable easy screening.
Since you are not bound to follow the 3-1-1 liquids rule here, you need not keep the medically necessary liquid in a zip-top plastic bag.
Rest all depends on the discretion of the TSA officers whether they allow you to take the medicines ahead. If something is found suspicious or they find it suitable, they may confiscate the item or discard it.
Medication Rule Exemption – Criterion 2
You will also be exempted from following this rule if you are sure that you will need the liquid medication during your flight and/or after reaching your destination.
Even if you are not able to find this medicine in the sterile section of the airport, or you know that the same is also not available at the location you are traveling to, you will not have to follow the TSA’s liquids rule.
If you have been prescribed injectable medication by your doctor, you can bring unused syringes on the flight in both hand luggage and checked baggage.
However, you must inform the TSA officer during the X-ray screening that there are unused syringes in your carry-on bag. In addition, it would also be better to label the syringes like you do for other medicines.
There are no restrictions on placing inhalers whether in your carry-on bag or checked luggage. Inhalers may be considered under the TSA 3-1-1 liquids rules. However, if you take them as medically necessary liquids then you may take them in more quantities than 3.4 ounces or 100 ml, as defined by the TSA. But yes, the quantity must be taken within reasonable limits.
It’s important to declare these items during the screening process. Labeling them will also help the TSA officers understand the purpose of such products.
Passengers are permitted to bring prescription drugs and other medications in both types of bags. This medication can be in solid or liquid form. In the case of liquid medication, you can bring them more than 3.4 ounces within reasonable amounts. This is because the TSA considers such items medically necessary liquids.
You might need them on the flight or right after reaching your destination. You never know, there could also be a sudden flight delay. So, you should pack them in your carry-on for immediate use.
Additionally, when you undergo the screening process, make sure to inform the TSA officers about such items. It is also better to keep them in their original packaging and keep the prescription intact with you. You may have to show them at your destination airport, especially during your travel to another country.
As stated on the TSA’s official website, you are permitted to bring medical marijuana on a plane in both carry-on and checked bags. Nonetheless, it calls for certain unique instructions.
Cannabidiol (CBD) oil is one example of a product that may be illegal under federal law, along with marijuana and other items containing cannabis. But, taking medical marijuana on a plane is only legal if the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved it for passengers to bring it. Also, provided its dry weight THC concentration is less than 0.3 percent, travelers may carry them.
This is important when you are heading on international travel. In such a case, it is strictly recommended to keep the prescription medicine in the original packaging you purchased from the pharmacy.
As such is not the case if you travel domestically within the USA, still it is better to be on the safer side. This is because some states might have different rules. Hence, you must carry out your research or contact the appropriate authorities to know about the laws of the state you are traveling to. Also, keep the prescription safe with you.
You must pack your medicines in a way that you are able to locate them easily as and when needed. Keeping them in a separate transparent bag or medium pouch secured by a zip will be helpful.
You may have to take out a pill right after claiming your baggage at the destination airport. So, it would be easier for you to find it. Even if you need the medicine during your stay, it’s just about getting it swiftly in your bag. So, keep it properly and separately from other items.
Whether you are on a domestic or international trip, it is always suggested to bring prescribed medicines only. There can still be some respite if you visit from one state to another within the USA, as the rules might not be strict.
Still, you never know about the laws of the destination state. So, seek information about the same and get set for hassle-free travel. In addition, please always keep in mind to take prescribed medicines in the case of international travel.
So, this was an easy guide about bringing medication on a plane. You can declare your solid and liquid medicines at the TSA security checkpoint and in fact, get an exemption from the 3-1-1 liquids rule in case of the latter.
Although unlimited quantities are allowed, you must take them in reasonable amounts. Also, be sure to take prescriptions along to avoid any chaos. Rest as you know, if something is found suspicious by the TSA officers, they may not let you go further with medications. Happy travels!
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, you can take medicine on a plane.
Yes, you can bring prescription pills on a plane.
Yes, you are allowed to take liquid medicine on a plane.
Usually, travelers are advised to take marked pills in case of International trips. Though there are no such issues in the case of domestic travel within the USA, you must gather related information beforehand.
Yes, you can take a pill organizer on a plane.
You are allowed to take all types of medication on a plane, provided they are not marked illegal by the authorities. For e.g., medical marijuana is allowed, but with certain instructions.
The TSA is primarily concerned about checking explosives or other dangerous items that may be used to harm passengers. But, if they find illegal medicines during the course of screening, they may take the matter to the law enforcement department.
Yes, you can take pills in hand luggage on a plane.
Yes, you are required to declare medication at the airport.
Yes, medicines are allowed on international flights.