Hand Luggage Restrictions You Must Know and How to Beat Them

How to Avoid Stress and Fees for Breaking Hand Luggage Rules

Hand Luggage rules have tightened up due to the understandably increased security procedures at airports across the world.  But that does not mean your time at the airport needs to be stressful and you need to worry if you just do a tiny bit of research and avoid the most common mistakes.

Essential Hand Luggage Rules

  • While the maximum hand luggage size is 56cm x 45cm x 25cm most airlines have different hand luggage allowances and rules.  It is ESSENTIAL you check these rules before your flight.  Check our allowance comparison guide and the official airline website for hand luggage restrictions on size and weight limits.
The maximum hand luggage size but different airline have different rules

The maximum hand luggage size is 56x45x25cm but many airline have their own further cabin bag restrictions. Image source BA

  • Getting the right cabin luggage – if you want to use your hand luggage more effectively you want a bag that makes the most of your allowance,  of a decent quality, pockets and cost.
  • Hand luggage liquids restrictions – all liquids must fit inside a plastic resealable bag of 20cm x 20cm and liquids must be no bigger than 100ml. I recommend a travel bottle set like the one below from Amazon UK which allows you to decant larger liquids like your favourite perfumes and lotions into smaller bottles.  These liquid rules also apply to USA and Canada flights, as well as EU flights and have become the standard hand luggage liquid rules for cabin baggage across the world.

Known as the 3-1-1 rule in the US which means exactly the same and the dimensions are exactly the same too.

  • No sharp object or illegal objects in your hand luggage (Well I would hope you weren`t planning on taking these anyway!)

Beat Hand Luggage Liquids Restrictions with A Travel Bottle SetA travel bottle set helping you take liquids in your cabin baggage.


What Else Am I Allowed in Hand Luggage?

  • Scissors with blades with less than 6cm and with rounded edges are allowed.
  • High heels – this is a surprisingly common question so yes, you are allowed high heels in hand luggage.

Further Hand Luggage Restrictions – What You Cannot Take as Hand Luggage

You cannot take these items as hand luggage on board with you.

  • Knives
  • Walking and hiking poles
  • Lighters are banned in hand luggage
  • Most razors
  • Tools including penknives
  • Corkscrews
  • Toy or replica guns – not allowed at all.  No. Shocking as it is no real guns can be taken as part of your hand luggage!
  • Darts
  • Cues for snooker and other similar games like pool cues are also banned
  • Animals

Check https://www.gov.uk/hand-luggage-restrictions/overview for official information.  You should also contact your airline if you are considering bringing anything unusual which you are unsure about.

These hand luggage rules are for safety and security purposes. They are not meant to give you a torrid time (although they are annoying!) and are one of the main disadvantages of using hand luggage.  However, don`t let it put you off one bag travel which offers many advantages like lower costs, less stress and greater mobility and learn about travelling hand luggage only be browsing the site and visiting our Getting Started page.

Comments (5)
  1. Jan Spragg 16/08/2014
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