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I know from experience that navigating the rules around flying can be tough. I’ve been caught out at the airport before with the liquids rule, and believe me, being stopped by security is not a fun experience. You might be wondering: can you bring a vape on a plane? And what are the rules around that? I’ll give you the basic TSA guidance to know what to expect.
Flying isn’t the most comfortable experience. This is even more true if you are a smoker or a vaper. From making your way through security to the actual flight and then going through the airport on the other side, it can be a long time to wait. I’ll give you the lowdown on what to expect in terms of when you are allowed to vape, so you can plan your journey.
Can You Take Your Vape On a Plane?
According to the TSA, you can bring your e-cigarette on a plane, but only if you follow certain restrictions.
You can’t take your vape in your checked luggage. You’ll have to take it with you in your carry-on bag. You’ll also have to make sure the lithium-ion battery in your vape doesn’t exceed a Wh (Watt-hour) rating of 100. Lithium metal batteries must not exceed a lithium content of 2 grams.
Each airline may have its restrictions regarding vapes in your carry-on luggage. As a general rule, you’ll have to follow the TSA’s 3-1-1 liquids rule. This means when it comes to refills, you’ll have to ensure that the containers are 3.4 ounces (100ml) or smaller and that they fit in a 1-quart clear zip-top bag.
The airline you’re flying with may have stricter restrictions when it comes to vapes. It’s always a good idea to check this out beforehand. Many airlines, like Southwest, don’t have specific extra rules other than the general e-cigarette/liquids rule. Others may be more restrictive (more on that in a moment).
AIrlines have good reason to be strict around e-cigarettes. Firstly, the usual security risks around liquids apply. This is because the CIA has thwarted several terrorism plans involving explosive liquids, so they have good reason to restrict it.
The other thing to consider is that lithium-based batteries are a fire risk, which is a real problem on a plane for obvious reasons. That’s why airlines want to know if you have batteries of any kind on you, and they want to be able to keep track of where those batteries are.
How to Pack Your Vape for a Flight
You need to be careful when it comes to transporting your vape on a plane. You will not be allowed, in any circumstances, to switch it on during a flight. You can expect to get in trouble if you do. I think it’s safer just to remove the battery, to prevent accidentally switching it on. You won’t be allowed to charge it during the flight either.
Another thing to consider is that you will not be allowed to fly with a weed vape. If you normally use one, make sure you don’t take any weed with you and thoroughly clean your vape before you head to the airport.
Other than that, just make sure that you follow the liquids rule by putting your vape juice in a clear 1-quart zip-top bag. The good news is you’ll have your vape with you, so you won’t have to worry about it getting broken or damaged (unless you drop it yourself).
As for CBD? That’s a tricky one. Restrictions vary from state to state. I’d recommend looking into this before your trip in case you get caught out.
How Many Refills Can I Bring With Me?
If you’re on a long trip, you might be a bit anxious about getting hold of your favorite vape juice. You will only be able to bring as many as you can fit in a 1-quart bag. It will take some creative packing to fit everything in there, and any toiletries you want to bring in your carry-on luggage will have to fit there too.
Individual Airline E-Cigarette Rules
Here’s what some of the most popular airlines have to say about vapes:
- Air Canada – standard rules
- Alaska Airlines – standard rules. E-cigarettes must be set in ‘safety mode’ to prevent them from going off accidentally
- American Airlines – standard rules. They recommend traveling with a designated carry case for your vape.
- British Airways – standard rules, the battery must be kept inside the device
- Delta – Standard rules
- JetBlue – standard rules. The device must be switched off and not charging.
- United Airlines – standard rules
I should mention here that these rules could change at any time, so you should check before your flight just in case.
The other thing I’d recommend keeping an eye on is the rules of the country you’re flying into. These can change at any moment, so check before you go to make sure you won’t get into trouble at the other end.
You should also check the rules around vaping in general in your chosen destination. They might be more or less strict than the rules you have at home. For example, some countries (like Argentina, Brazil, Syria, and Uganda) ban vapes completely, so to avoid problems with security at the other end, you’ll need to leave them at home.
However, other countries are a little more relaxed. For example, e-cigarettes are pretty popular in the UK, where you can safely vape outdoors and in smoking areas with no problems. You’ll also find tons of vape juice in stores on the high street, particularly smaller newsagents and supermarkets.
In Sweden, you can vape indoors, so you won’t have to worry at all!
Vaping At The Airport
Some airport lounges have a smoking area, which is helpful if you want to vape just before a flight. This depends on the individual airport. You may not find the smoking area easily. Many airports don’t have them anymore, and even if they do, they don’t advertise them. So you may have to ask a member of staff when you get to the airport.
Local laws around smoking and vaping may vary. I’d recommend bringing some nicotine gum or similar with you to avoid cravings while you travel. This is especially true if you have to catch more than 1 connecting flight. It’s tempting to vape in the break between flights, but you might have to leave the airport and then go through security all over again, which is a massive inconvenience.
Frequently Asked Questions – Can You Bring Vape on a Plane
Answer: I’ll just say this: don’t do it. There’s a really good reason why batteries need to be monitored on planes. They can explode in the cargo hold, thanks to the air pressure. This happened on a Delta Airlines flight: a battery melted along with a t-shirt next to it. Luckily staff caught the smoke and everyone was safe, but it’s not much of a stretch to imagine what would happen if a battery burst into flames mid-flight.
Answer: No. It’s not allowed in any way. Even if it accidentally switches on you could face some consequences.
Also, it’s not fair on other passengers to have to smell your vape juice (even if it does smell good). You never know if people around you have allergies or asthma.
Answer: It’s a decent substitute during a flight. It takes a minute or so for the nicotine to absorb into your body, and you can get about 30 minutes of intermittent nicotine hits this way.
It’s not ideal to be stuck on a long flight without your vape, but it can be done, especially if you use aids like gum to help you along.
Answer: Yes. Nicotine patches work well and can be safely worn on a plane if you’ve used them before. If you’ve never used them and you have underlying health conditions, it’s a good idea to check with your doctor before you try them out for the first time.
Nicotine patches are good because they’re convenient. Once you’ve put it on, you can forget about it. It takes up to 8 hours for the nicotine to get into your bloodstream at a comfortable level, so make sure to apply it well before your flight.
Hopefully, this has helped you to plan your journey. Flying when you’re used to vaping or smoking every couple of hours is tough, so at least you’ll be prepared by knowing the rules in advance.
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