Traveling with a carry-on bag is convenient. You don’t have to worry about waiting to pick up your bag once you land. Instead, you can just grab it and go. But it does come with some restrictions, including the size of the bag and what you can carry in it, especially when it comes to liquid.

Yes, you can take liquid on a plane, but there are restrictions. As a standard rule, you can only take 3.4 ounces on a plane in a single bottle. If you exceed the allotted amount, your items will likely be confiscated and thrown out by security. Let’s dig deeper into the fine print so you understand what you can and cannot take on an airplane.

What are the Liquid Limits for Carry-on Luggage?

The standard rule for carrying liquids on a plane is 3-1-1: 3.4 ounces (100 milliliters) in a one-quart-sized bag for one person. This applies to liquids, aerosols, gels, creams, pastes, and anything else that’s not a solid consistency. Mostly, it includes makeup, personal hygiene products, water bottles, and more that are in travel-sized containers.

Whatever liquids you’re carrying need to fit into a bag that zips closed, and you’ll need to remove them from your bag as you pass through security. If you do not adhere to the protocol, your bag may be flagged by security, and your items will be removed or discarded following further examination.

There are typically no exceptions to the rule unless you are a nursing mother or have another medical exemption.

What are the Liquid Limits for Checked Luggage?

If you can’t parry down your liquids, that’s okay! You have options. You can always put them in your checked bags. There are no restrictions on the amount of liquids you can include in them if they’re checked.

While it’s not required to place your items in bags, it is best practice to prevent any leakage. Transport can be hard on luggage, even if it’s marked as fragile, so if you want to be extra certain your liquids won’t get on your other items, make sure they are secured.

What Can I Do if My Items are Confiscated?

If your liquids are bigger than 3.4 ounces and you try to slip them by airport security, chances are they’ll get confiscated. Maybe you forgot about a water bottle you left in your bag or thought your half-filled bottle of toothpaste was less than 3.4 ounces. Whatever the circumstances, you will likely lose the personal care items and need to repurchase them.

These security protocols are in place to protect the safety of passengers and staff, and they are taken seriously. If your items are taken, you’ll need to repurchase them if you need them. Depending on where you’re staying, some hotels may comp small personal care items like toothpaste or mouthwash, so it’s worth asking the question when you arrive if you can wait.

So, Can You Really Take Liquids on Airplanes?

Yes! You can take liquids on airlines as long as you follow the rules. Your items must be 3.4 ounces or smaller and fit in a quart-sized bag. As you arrive, you should remove them from your luggage for easy scanning, though some airports may have different regulations in place so it’s important to familiarize yourself before you travel.

If your items are too big, you can always check your bag. Any items that do not meet the requirements will be discarded by airport security, which can be a costly inconvenience, depending on what it is. As long as you follow the rules, you will be fine with liquids on planes.