How Many Ounces Can You Take on a Plane?

When it comes to packing for a trip, most of us tend to get carried away and pack more than we actually need. However, when it comes to liquids, aerosols, and gels, there are strict regulations enforced by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) that limit the amount you can bring on a plane. In this article, we’ll be discussing the maximum number of ounces of liquids, aerosols, and gels that you can carry with you on a flight.

Why is This Topic Important to Consider?

Knowing how many ounces of liquids, aerosols, and gels you’re allowed to bring on a plane is crucial for several reasons:

  1. Preventing security breaches: The TSA’s liquid restrictions aim to prevent any potential security threats in the plane. Therefore, it’s important to understand these guidelines and comply with them to avoid delays, missed flights, and even legal repercussions.

  2. Saving time and money: If you’re aware of the limitations, you can plan ahead and avoid having to throw away your favorite face wash or expensive perfume. Also, by packing within the limits, you’ll avoid unnecessary fees for checked luggage or overweight baggage.

  3. Ensuring a comfortable flight: Over-packing liquids can lead to leaks, spills, or broken bottles, causing discomfort to you and your fellow passengers. By packing the right amount of liquids, you can make sure that your trip is stress-free and seamless.

Now that we’ve established the importance of the topic, let’s dive into the specifics.

How Many Ounces Can You Take On A Plane?

Overview of TSA’s Restrictions on Liquids, Aerosols, and Gels

Before packing your bag with liquids, aerosols, or gels, it’s important to understand what they actually mean, and the restrictions imposed by the TSA.

Definition of Liquids, Aerosols, and Gels

Liquids are defined as substances that pour or flow easily, such as shampoos, conditioners, mouthwash, and beverages. Aerosols are sprays, such as deodorants, hair spray, and insect sprays, that release mist, powder, or vapor. Gels are substances that are gel or paste-like in consistency, such as toothpaste, hair styling gels, and lotions.

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Restrictions on Size and Amount of Containers

The TSA has strict guidelines regarding the amount of liquids, aerosols, and gels that can be carried on a plane. According to the TSA’s 3-1-1 rule, each passenger is allowed to bring a quart-sized clear plastic bag containing liquids, aerosols, and gels in containers that are 3.4 ounces or less per item. These items must fit comfortably in the quart-sized bag, which must be placed in a separate bin during the security check.

Exceptions to the Restrictions

While most liquids, aerosols, and gels are subject to the 3-1-1 rule, there are some exceptions. Medications, baby formula, and breast milk are allowed in reasonable quantities exceeding the 3.4 ounces limit, as long as they are removed from the carry-on and declared to TSA agents. Additionally, duty-free liquids purchased at the airport, such as alcohol or perfume, can also be brought on board in containers exceeding 3.4 ounces, as long as they are sealed in a tamper-evident bag and accompanied by a proof of purchase.

Now that we’ve covered the TSA’s guidelines on liquids, aerosols, and gels, let’s take a closer look at the specifics of what you can and can’t bring on board.

How many ounces of liquid can you take

Specifics on What You Can and Cannot Bring on a Plane

Knowing what you can and cannot bring on a plane can save you a lot of hassle and stress during security checks. In this section, we’ll look at the TSA’s guidelines for liquids, aerosols, and gels, and what you can expect to bring with you on board.


The 3-1-1 rule applies to all liquids, including water, juice, and other beverages. Keep in mind that the 3.4-ounce limit is for the container size, not the amount of liquid inside. You’ll need to consider the volume of the liquid and not exceed 100 milliliters or 3.4 ounces per container. To make it easier, use travel-sized containers and only bring what you will need for your trip.

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Aerosols, such as hairspray, deodorant, and insect spray, are also governed by the 3-1-1 rule. You can bring a maximum of 3.4 ounces per container, and each container must fit in the quart-sized clear plastic bag. Keep in mind that aerosols can sometimes leak, so make sure to secure them tightly with the cap and wrap them in a plastic bag to prevent any mess.


Gels, such as toothpaste, hair gel, and lotions, are also subject to the 3-1-1 rule. Bring only travel-sized tubes or containers that fit within the quart-sized clear plastic bag. If you have a larger container, it can be placed in your checked luggage or shipped separately.

It’s important to note that TSA agents have the final say on what items are allowed on board. If you’re uncertain about an item, it’s best to leave it out of your carry-on bag to avoid any issues.

Next, we’ll look at some tips and tricks to make packing your liquids easier and less stressful.

how many ounces can you carry on a plane

Tips and Tricks for Packing Your Liquids

Packing your liquids for a flight can be stressful, but with some tips and tricks, you can make the process smoother and simpler.

Use Travel-Sized Containers

Invest in travel-sized containers for your liquids that fit within the 3.4-ounce limit. Many brands offer travel-sized versions of their most popular products, making it easy for you to bring your favorite products without exceeding the limit.

Put Your Liquids in a Clear Bag

Make sure to put all your liquids, aerosols, and gels in a quart-sized clear plastic bag before heading to the airport. This will make the security check process much faster and easier. You can purchase clear plastic bags at most drugstores or online. It’s also a good idea to double bag your liquids to prevent any leaks or spills.

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Know the Exceptions to the Rule

Remember that certain liquids, aerosols, and gels are exempt from the 3-1-1 rule, such as baby formula, breast milk, and medications. If you’re unsure whether an item is exempt, make sure to check with the TSA beforehand or declare it to the security agent when going through screening.

By following these tips and tricks, you’ll be able to pack your liquids efficiently and avoid any issues during the security check process. Remember to plan ahead and only bring what you need for the duration of your trip.


Knowing how many ounces of liquids you can take on a plane is important to prevent any security breaches, save time and money, and ensure a comfortable flight. The TSA’s guidelines for liquids, aerosols, and gels may seem strict, but they are in place to ensure the safety of passengers and crew members. By packing within the limits and following the tips and tricks, you can make the process stress-free and avoid any delays or issues.
How Many Ounces Can You Bring on a Plane


In summary, when it comes to packing your liquids for a flight, it’s important to keep in mind the TSA’s guidelines. Liquids, aerosols, and gels are subject to the 3-1-1 rule, with a maximum container size of 3.4 ounces per item. Exceptions apply to medications, baby formula, breast milk, and duty-free liquids purchased at the airport.

To make packing your liquids easier, invest in travel-sized containers, put your liquids in a clear plastic bag, and be aware of the exemptions to the rule. Remember to plan ahead and only bring what you need for your trip.

It’s important to follow these guidelines to ensure a smooth and safe flight for everyone. Failure to comply with TSA’s restrictions can result in missed flights, legal consequences, and even fines.

By following the TSA’s guidelines and the tips and tricks mentioned in this article, you can make packing your liquids a hassle-free experience and avoid any issues at the airport. Bon voyage!

Katelyn B. Davis

By Katelyn B. Davis

Katelyn, the passionate "Aviation Addict," is the vibrant voice behind the some of the AviationVector blog articles! Fueling her insatiable love for all things aviation, Katelyn takes readers on a thrilling journey through the skies. With infectious enthusiasm and a knack for storytelling, she uncovers hidden aviation gems, shares insider tips, and dives into the world of aviators with unbridled excitement. Get ready to be swept away by Katelyn's contagious passion as she invites you to join her on extraordinary skyward adventures.

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