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Essential Guide to Airport Security Regulations & Airline Baggage: Make Flying a Breeze

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Don't let the challenges of air travel and airport security scare you away from vacationing in the world's most spectacular spots. With Travel Sense, you'll have the right guidance to ease your way through airport security lines — often the most time-consuming part of your journey — and on the way to your destination.

This is a simplified guide to airline baggage and airport security regulation will help you pack without fear for your next big trip. Below, you'll find the airport security regulations that you'll need to know when checking your luggage and airline carry-on baggage. Also, be sure that you and your travel agent check for the most updated information for your airline as well as the Travel Security Administration (TSA).

This is the easy formula for airline carry-on baggage established by TSA that mandates that you can only carry liquids, aerosols and gels in three-ounce containers, which should be safely kept inside a one-quart, plastic zip-top bag. This includes common items such as toothpaste, shampoo and food. You should be aware that airline carry-on baggage extends to gift or special items including lotions, creams, scented oils, liquid soaps, perfumes and even snow globes.

Be Aware of What Not to Bring in Your Checked Baggage and in Carry-On Baggage

Along with your personal items, you are also permitted to bring corkscrews, cigar cutters, common lighters, nail cutters, safety razors and travel-sized or blunt scissors in your carry on baggage. If you are carrying any types of martial arts weapons or tools — ax, crowbar, hammer, drill pliers, saw, etc — you'll have to pack them in your checked bags. If you pack any sharp objects in your checked suitcase, wrap them to ensure safety for the baggage handlers and transportation security officers. To learn more, read TravelSense's guide or visit www.TSA.gov for the official list of prohibited items.

To prevent unintentional short-circuiting and fires, there is a limit for packing loose lithium batteries, which are commonly used in digital cameras, cell phones, PDAs and laptop computers. For your checked airline baggage, batteries must be installed in the electronic device. You are limited to 8 grams (100-watt hours) of lithium batteries in your carry-on baggage, and they must be properly protected in original packaging or a protective case.

The transportation security officer at the airport may deem certain items too dangerous to permit through the checkpoint. Be aware that the list of permitted and prohibited items will be updated as necessary.

Pack Smart & Spend Less Time in Airport Security Lines

Your travel agent will know the different airline security regulations, but for more airlines, the maximize size of your airline carry on baggage is 45 linear inches. Save yourself from extra hassles by checking anything larger and try to pack your carry on baggage as light as possible. Know that if you have a full bag, your personal items may spill out for everyone to see when the airport security officer unzips it. For both your checked and carry on baggage, try to organize its contents, so that everything is easy to see in a brief glance.

When possible, keep from overstuffing your checked suitcase to avoid additional airline baggage fees. When traveling over the holidays, ship your gifts ahead of time instead of packing them. If you insist on bringing gifts, consider wrapping them after you arrive at your destination. For travelers who still make use of a non-digital camera, don't pack film in your checked luggage, because the screening equipment will damage it. It's better if you can keep undeveloped film and cameras in your carry on baggage.

Travel Sense is here with helpful advice, destination information and tools to help you prepare for your next vacation. Within a few clicks, you can create and print your own packing list, which is customized to your travel destination, activities, weather and accommodations.

For more information on airport check-in and documents for getting through airport security check points, read our Airport Security Regulations guide.