So many nowadays are asking, “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?” Traveling can be dangerous, especially in places you are not familiar with the surroundings. So naturally, we want to feel safe and protect ourselves.
I understand how you feel, especially for us ladies. I am a seasoned traveler and have a vast knowledge of TSA regulations and what you can and cannot fly with. I am here to share my knowledge with you when it comes to “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?”
No one wants to feel vulnerable when traveling. So, together, let’s navigate the world of pepper spray and the regulations surrounding “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?”
Can You Bring Pepper Spray On A Plane?
Pepper spray is a weapon when used against another, even if it is for our safety. And if we think about it in terms of a weapon that a criminal may use, it presents a whole new light.
TSA says you can take 4 fluid-ounce containers, equal to 118 milliliters container of pepper spray, in your checked luggage only, not in carry on. It must have a preventative safety cover so there is no accidental discharge of the contents during the flight.
A Bit Of History on Mace
Pepper spray has been around for decades, and while it’s not the most effective weapon in the world, it does have its uses. It’s also one of those things that people are afraid of because they don’t understand how it works. Let’s clear up some misconceptions about pepper spray so you better understand why you can or cannot fly with it.
First, Mace is a brand name of pepper spray and not a different form. When we ask, “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?” it is the same as, “Can you travel with mace?”
Pepper spray was originally invented to be used as a bear spray if you encounter one in the wild. From there, it was used in riots, then by the police, and later sold as a self-defense mechanism.
What Is Pepper Spray?
A pepper spray product is an aerosolized chemical compound that irritates your eyes and respiratory system. Capsaicin is the main ingredient in pepper spray, found in chili peppers, and will cause pain when sprayed in the eyes.
It works by blocking certain chemicals in the body called TRPV1 receptors. These receptors are located throughout our bodies, including our skin, lungs, heart, digestive tract, brain, and nervous system. When these receptors are blocked, we experience pain.
The amount of capsaicin in pepper spray varies from brand to brand, but generally speaking, it contains between 0.18% and 3% capsaicin. However, the amount of active ingredients in Mace is not closely regulated.
The effects of capsaicin wear off fairly quickly, usually within 30 minutes or less. However, there are ways to prolong the effects of pepper spray. For example, you could rub the affected area with ice, which will numb the area. Or you could apply a topical cream containing capsaicin.
There are many different types of pepper sprays available today. Some contain only capsaicin; others may include other ingredients such as alcohol, menthol, eucalyptus oil, or camphor. And yet again, some pepper sprays have tear gas in them.
What Does TSA Say About Can You Bring Pepper Spray On A Plane?”
TSA (Transporation Security Administration) develops guidelines for what a person can and cannot take on a plane. When it comes to “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?” TSA has a set of rules.
TSA says you can take 4 fluid-ounce containers, equal to 118 milliliters container of pepper spray, in your checked luggage. It must have a preventative safety cover so there is no accidental discharge of the contents during the flight.
Another stipulation in the guideline states if your container of Mace has more than 2% CN or CS tear gas, you cannot take it in checked or carry on luggage.
What Does The FAA Say?
The FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) says basically the same thing that TSA says when it comes to “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?” The exception to the rule is that an aerosol container must meet the regulations for 49 CFR 171.8. The pepper spray rules regulate what a self-defense spray is and if it is a hazardous material.
Will All Airlines Allow Pepper Spray On A Flight?
Even though TSA and FAA say you can bring pepper spray onto a plane in checked luggage, individual airlines have their own rules. Many airlines do not allow Mace onto an aircraft in any piece of luggage or on your person.
“Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?” is different for each airline. A more popular airline that allows pepper spray is Hawaiian Airlines. Airlines that do not allow it on a plane are American Airlines, United Airlines, Southwest Airlines, and Delta Airlines.
The best way to know is to talk to the airline you travel on and learn their rules.
What About Foreign Countries?
When asking the question, “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?” we need to discuss the legality in foreign countries. It is illegal in some countries and has restrictions in others.
For your convenience and to help answer, “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?” I have compiled a list of countries per category, illegal, legal, and restrictions in the image below. If one of the countries you travel to has restrictions, be sure to look up the laws to see what they say.
FAQs About Can You Travel With Pepper Spray?
Here are some commonly asked questions about, “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?”.
What neutralizes pepper spray?
There is no neutralizer for pepper spray. Even water or oil will not decrease the effects of capsicum; they will wear off in approximately 30 minutes.
Can you fly with pepper spray in carry-on?
The FAA regulations say pepper spray can not be in checked luggage inside the cabin of a plane. So, to answer, “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?” no, you may not have it in your carry on, personal bag, or on your person.
Can pepper spray go through a metal detector?
Pepper spray is in a metal container, which will set off the airport detectors. The chances of a TSA agent finding your pepper spray are pretty big.
Does pepper spray go off in metal detectors?
Pepper spray typically is in a metal container, making it highly likely to set off an alarm. However, the metal detector will not combust the container and cause the mace to discharge.
If you are looking for more tutorials, walkthroughs, and troubleshooting on TSA, here are some additional posts about TSA:
Can You Travel With Pepper Spray – Conclusion
The answer to “Can you bring pepper spray on a plane?” is yes and no. TSA gives guidelines, yet each airline will set its own rules to fit its needs. At the same time, a personal pepper spray canister can not be a carry on item.
If a pepper spray canister is allowed on a plane, it must be in your checked bags and meet the FAA stipulations.
Please look at the list of countries to ensure you are taking pepper spray into a country where it is illegal.
Happy travels, my friends.