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Glue In Hand Luggage: Navigating TSA Rules

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If you’ve ever found yourself preparing for a trip and wondering, “Can I bring glue in my carry-on luggage?” you’re not alone. This seemingly simple question can become a major issue for DIY enthusiasts, crafters, and parents packing for a family vacation.

As a seasoned travel and luggage expert, I understand the confusion that can arise from navigating TSA rules. This article is specifically tailored for my fellow travelers who need to know the ins and outs of traveling with glue. Let’s delve into this sticky situation together and determine if and what kind of glue you can travel, along with TSA guidelines.

Understanding The TSA Guidelines For Carrying Glue

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has specific rules regarding what can and cannot be brought onto a plane in your hand luggage. When it comes to glue, the TSA’s guidelines are clear.

Non-flammable glue is allowed in carry-on bags but must be 3.4 ounces or less. It should fit comfortably in a single, quart-sized, resealable bag along with your other travel-sized liquid items. Larger containers are permitted in checked bags.

TSA 3-1-1 Liquids Rule

Here is a quick break of what 3-1-1 says.

  1. The 3 in the 3 1 1 rule refers to the amount of liquid you can carry in a bottle onto your flight, either in your carry on luggage or personal carry on. So you must have a 3.4-ounce travel-size container with only 3.4 ounces of liquid products in each one.
  2. The first, 1 in the 3 1 1 rule, refers to a one-quart size bag. You can stuff all the liquids you can fit into this one-quart size bag. The bag must be clear and no larger than a quart.
  3. The second, 1 in the 3 1 1 rule, refers to how many bags one person can carry onto the plane. Each person can have only one quart-sized bag with liquids as a carry on item, so if you are traveling alone, then only one bag. But if you have children who carry their own carry on luggage, they can also have one bag apiece.
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Identifying Flammable Glue

One of the key factors to consider when packing glue for your trip is whether it is flammable or not. If it is noted as flammable, it is not permitted on planes, either in hand luggage or checked bags. To determine if yours is flammable, look for a “flammable” symbol on the packaging and read the product description carefully. If you find any indication that it is flammable, it’s best to leave it at home.

Specific Types Of Glue And Air Travel

Different types of glue come with their own set of rules. Here’s a quick rundown:

PVA Glue And Air Travel

PVA (polyvinyl acetate) is generally allowed in hand luggage, provided it is non-flammable. Remember to pack it in your bag of liquids, which should be a transparent, resealable zip-top bag.

School Glue And Air Travel

Similar to PVA, school glue is permitted in carry-on baggage as long as it is non-flammable. Don’t forget to pack it in your bag of liquids.

Super Glue And Air Travel

Super glue is typically flammable and is not allowed on a plane in the US. The same rule applies in Europe.

Contact TSA

If you have questions, you can contact TSA a few different ways.

  1. Just call them at the help number (855) 787-2227. I suggest you do this at least 72 hours in advance of your trip. You never know how busy they may be.
  2. Contact them on the Ask TSA Facebook page. Then click the “Message” button to ask a question.
  3. You can tweet to TSA by using the @AskTSA Twitter handle.
  4. Or you can visit customer service online for assistance.
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Frequently Asked Questions

Navigating TSA rules can sometimes feel like navigating a maze. To help you find your way, here are answers to some frequently asked questions.

Can I bring a glue stick in my carry-on luggage?

Yes, you can bring a glue stick in your carry-on luggage. However, like other types, it must be non-flammable and fit within your quart-sized bag of liquids. Each passenger is allowed one quart-sized bag for liquids, aerosols, gels, creams, and pastes in their carry-on bag.

What happens if I accidentally bring flammable glue in my hand luggage?

If you accidentally bring one that is flammable in your hand luggage, it will likely be confiscated at the security checkpoint. TSA officers have the final say on whether an item is allowed through the checkpoint.

Can I pack glue in my checked luggage?

Yes, you can pack it in your checked luggage. Non-flammable glue of any size can be packed in checked bags. However, flammable glue is not permitted in either carry-on or checked bags due to safety regulations.

Can I bring epoxy resin glue on a plane?

Epoxy resin is typically considered a hazardous material and is generally not allowed in either carry-on or checked luggage. However, regulations can vary, so it’s always best to check with the TSA or your airline before you travel.

Are there any exceptions to the TSA’s rules about glue?

The TSA’s rules about anything are generally quite strict for safety reasons. However, there may be exceptions for certain types of medical supplies or equipment. Suppose you need to travel with a type of glue for medical reasons. In that case, contacting the TSA or your airline in advance is recommended to understand the specific procedures and documentation required.

Additional Resources

If you are looking for more tutorials, walkthroughs, and troubleshooting on TSA, here are some additional posts about TSA:


Navigating TSA rules can be a sticky situation, but with the right knowledge, you can easily glide through security. Remember, when in doubt, always check the TSA’s official website or contact them directly for clarification.

Happy travels, my friends.

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Laura Fuller

Hello, I am a luggage and travel fanatic. With a vast knowledge of TSA regulations, I am here to assist you on your journey. Please join me, and together, we will navigate the world of travel. From TSA and air to cruising the high seas, we will explore the best accessories and tips for smooth travel.

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