When you’re trying to find the best supplements to take on flights, you have to consider more than just the supplements you’re bringing with you – you have to consider carefully packing supplements for air travel as well.
The TSA has very strict regulations about what you are and are not allowed to bring with you onto flights. These rules have changed over the years, so you must always be mindful of what the rules are at the time that you’ll be traveling with supplements.
With that in mind, we’re going to discuss a few important elements regarding packing supplements for air travel, and cover some important questions that are often asked, such as ‘can I put vitamins in my carry on?’ or ‘can I put liquids in my carry on?’.
Before we can talk about the specifics, let’s look at the rules the TSA currently has in place.
Pills, gummies, and powdered supplements are permitted on planes, as long as they are in their original packages and can fit inside the 1-quart bag given by security for your carry-on.
The easiest way to generally think about bringing liquids on a plane is to follow the 3-1-1 rule.
This rule applies to the maximum volume of liquids, gels, or creams that is allowed in a single package within your carry-on – 3.4 ounces or 100ml. All liquid containers must fit in a 1-quart sealable bag and each traveler may only bring 1 bag. 3-1-1.
Traveling with supplements in amounts above the 3.4 ounces/100ml limitations is allowed, but only if you have a doctor’s note explaining your need for them.
If your vitamins or supplement containers are larger than the permitted size for your carry-on, you may be required to transfer some of them into smaller packages.
In this event, you’re required to take photo evidence of the original packaging of the product in question, if the TSA agent asks you to explain what the vitamins or supplements are.
Whenever possible, we’d recommend trying to keep your vitamins or supplements in their original packages, as it will draw far less suspicion on you.
In some cases, even with photographic evidence, vitamins or supplements outside of their regular packaging may be taken for further testing. If this happens to you, try to be patient.
It may not be convenient to spend extra time at the airport in security, but if you don’t argue with the TSA agent, they’ll have no reason to make your delay any longer than it needs to be.
Remember: The TSA is there for your protection. Sometimes it may cause delays, but they have all of our best interests at heart.
International flights leaving or returning to the United States will be subject to the same TSA rules as any other domestic flight.
This means that if you’re traveling to Europe, Asia, or any other international destination, outgoing and return flights will still be held to the same standard as flights within the US.
However, domestic flights within international countries will be subject to their own unique set of rules, since the TSA’s is reserved for flights leaving, within, or returning to the United States.
If you’re unsure of the international rules for the country that you’re visiting, we recommend contacting your local embassy representative for more information.
They will be able to give you all the information that you need to ensure that you’re safely and securely bringing all your necessary vitamins and supplements with you on your trip, without putting you at risk of avoidable issues.
Anything that you can spare needing to access during your flight and is held in a container larger than 3.4 ounces or 100ml is best to be stored in your checked luggage.
This will save you from avoidable issues like having to explain medical needs – or worse, risk having these vitamins or supplements confiscated, because they don’t fall within the accepted TSA guidelines.
Our rule is: if you don’t need it, and you’re unsure whether it will be accepted, go the safe route. Pack it in your checked bag. You’ll still be able to access it once you reach your destination.
If the larger container has something you absolutely must access, put it into a smallholding container for the trip. Just be sure to take pictures of the main container. This way, you can show TSA agents at security if there are any questions about the supplement’s authenticity.
If you’ve been asking ‘can I put vitamins in my carry-on?’, the answer is yes, you can.
As long as the vitamins are in containers no larger than 3.4 ounces or 100ml, and can be stored in the 1-quart bag provided by security.
When you’re traveling with supplements that you’ve been forced to separate from their original packaging, be sure to have photo evidence of the original packaging or a doctor’s note to show the TSA agent.
If you’ve been wondering ‘can I put liquids in my carry-on?’, the answer is yes, you’re allowed – As long as it’s within the guidelines.
The only caveat is that your liquids need to be in labeled packages and must be no larger than 3.4 ounces or 100ml.
If you’ve got liquid supplements or medications larger than the 100ml/3.4-ounce guideline, you’ll be required to show a doctor’s note to bring it on the plane.
When this is the case, come prepared. Unidentified liquids in large volumes are likely to be seized by TSA unless you can prove that you need them, and they’re safe to bring on board.
If you think it’s going to be an issue, consider packing them in your checked bag.
Supplements follow the same list of restrictions that vitamins and liquids do for eligibility.
This means that they need to follow the same rules as these other items.
It’s important to note that protein powder is not restricted by the TSA, but that’s assuming that you have proof of its authenticity.
Many protein powder containers are too large to comfortably fit in a carry-on, but if you separate it from its original packaging, be sure to have proof.
Otherwise, you could run the risk of it being seized for further testing.
Half of the battle when you’re packing supplements for air travel is finding the right type of bag to hold all your necessary vitamins and supplements.
We’d recommend grabbing a vitamin/medicine travel kit organizer that you can use to easily hold all your bottles.
Then, when you go through security, separate this clearly from the rest of your belongings. This way, the TSA agents know you’re not trying to hide anything.
They may want to take a look, but they’ll likely appreciate your organization. After all, you’re making their job easier too.
As you can see, just like having an active rest day while you’re in transit on your trip, packing supplements for air travel doesn’t have to be a big headache – as long as you follow the rules and take the time to pack tactfully.
When you’re prepared for your trip, traveling with supplements is a breeze. Now you can start bringing all your favorite vitamins and supplements along, no matter where your travel journeys take you.
Access to all your necessary supplements and vitamins on your travels helps physically and mentally prepare you to face every day head-on, and that’s a crucial step we all need to always Getaway Well.