Can you bring cologne on a plane? What about perfume? These are questions people commonly wonder when packing for an upcoming flight. It’s widely known that liquids have restrictions in carry-on bags, but do cologne and perfume follow those same rules?
In this article, we’ll answer the questions of, “can I bring cologne on a plane?” You can also find out how much to bring and how to pack it.
Can You Bring Cologne on a Plane?
Yes, you can bring cologne on a plane. However, if you bring it through security, there will be some restrictions. Since cologne is a liquid, it follows TSA’s 3-1-1 rule.
TSA’s Liquid Rule
The rule for liquids in the plane cabin states that you can bring containers of liquid that are 3.4 oz (100 ml) or less through security. Any liquids, creams, gels, or items of a similar consistency fall under this category, including everyday items like toothpaste.
The “3-1-1” rule stands for:
3 – Passengers can bring liquids, gels, and creams into the cabin if the containers are 3.4 oz or less
1 – Those liquid containers should be placed in a clear, quart-sized bag
1 – There can only be one of those quart-sized bags per person
This rule doesn’t apply to liquids in checked bags, so measure your suitcase before heading to the flight. If your bag is small and you’d like to use it as a carry-on, you’ll need to follow the carry-on liquid rules. However, if it’s too big to bring in the cabin, you can keep reading to find out the checked bag cologne restrictions.
Cologne in a Carry-on Bag
According to TSA, cologne follows the 3-1-1 liquids rule. So, you can bring small cologne containers in a carry-on bag or personal item as long as they’re 3.4 oz/100 ml or less. 3.4 oz is the size of the container, not how much substance is in that container. The rules are almost identical for airlines in various countries.
If you don’t have any travel fragrance bottles, you may want to purchase a refillable container that meets TSA’s size requirements. Then, before each trip, you can refill it with the cologne of your choice to ensure that it will meet the carry-on rules.
Cologne in a Checked Bag
There are less restrictions for what you can put in a checked bag since you can’t access those items during the flight. According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), cologne and perfume are considered hazardous in large amounts. Thus, each individual person cannot bring more than 70 oz (2 kg) or 68 fluid oz (2 L) of cologne. The capacity of the container cannot surpass 18 oz (0.5 kg) or 17 fluid oz (500 ml). Most countries share these same regulations for flights.
Can You Take Perfume on a Plane?
If you’ve ever wondered, “can I take perfume on a plane?” the answer is yes. Since perfume is a liquid like cologne, it follows the same restrictions for carry-on and checked bags. So, the carry on perfume size is 3.4 oz or less. In checked bags, the size must fit the FAA’s regulations.
Can You Use Fragrances on a Plane?
If you have cologne or perfume in the cabin during your flight, there are no rules saying you can’t use it. However, if you use it, only use it in small amounts to be respectful to the people around you. It’s better to use it before or after the flight so the scent doesn’t linger in the aircraft. Just because the smell is appealing to you doesn’t mean everyone will appreciate it.
If you use a fragrance on a flight that’s too intense for other passengers, the flight attendant may ask you to stop using it. Most of the time, the scent won’t seem overpowering to the person using it because they’re used to it, but even a little bit could bother other people. Keep that in mind before you spray cologne or perfume on an airplane.
How to Pack Cologne and Perfume
When packing any liquids, creams, or gels in a carry-on bag, you need to put all the containers into one quart-sized bag. The bag should be transparent and resealable. You may be asked to remove the plastic bag when passing through security, so pack it in a spot that’s easy to access.
There aren’t any specific restrictions for packing fragrances in a checked bag. However, since any liquids could leak during the flight, putting them in some type of plastic bag is recommended. If the fragrance container is fragile, wrap soft items around it to act as a cushion.
In both instances, if your fragrance has a spray nozzle, you should make sure the cap is on it to prevent it from leaking.
Can You Purchase Cologne or Perfume in the Airport?
It’s possible to buy fragrances in the airport after going through security. Even if those bottles are over 3.4 oz, they’re allowed on the flight because the goods sold at those stores have already been confirmed to be safe. However, if you have a return flight, you won’t be able to bring the fragrance through security if it doesn’t follow the 3-1-1 liquids rule.
Perfume and cologne purchased at the airport will likely be more expensive than fragrances purchased elsewhere because your options for where to purchase items are limited once you’re through security.
Frequently Asked Questions
Before you pack for your next flight, it’s normal to have some questions. Hopefully, these answers will give you some clarity.
Why is Liquid Restricted on Airlines?
The liquid restrictions were put in place in 2006 after terrorists planned to detonate liquid explosives on several flights. The plan was foiled, but the rules were put in place to prevent similar attacks from happening.
How Much Cologne/Perfume Will You Use Per Day?
A fragrance can produce about ten sprays per ml of fragrance. So, consider how many sprays you use per day to calculate if the number of ml you have will be enough for your trip. Even with a travel-sized container, it’s unlikely that you’ll run out of spray, regardless of your trip’s length.
Are There Any Fragrances That Aren’t Liquids?
Yes, there are products known as solid cologne and perfume. They’re a balm rather than a liquid. Most balms are allowed on flights without restrictions, but it depends on how solid the consistency is.
Can You Bring Lotion on a Plane?
Yes, you can bring lotion on a plane, but it follows the 3-1-1 liquids rule for carry-on bags. It doesn’t have restrictions for checked bags. Like cologne, only use strong-smelling lotion sparingly on a flight.
Can You Bring Hand Sanitizer on a Plane?
Yes, you can bring hand sanitizer on a flight, but it follows all the same rules as cologne for both carry-on and checked bags.
Pack Your Liquids Carefully on Planes
Now you know the answer to “can you take cologne on a plane?” The rules are similar to other liquids and similar items, but cologne and perfume have a few restrictions for checked bags that other products may not.
Before you pack for your flight, decide which luggage sizes you’ll be bringing. If you’re taking a checked bag along, it’s okay to pack some extra liquids, but if you only have a carry-on, you’ll need to limit how much cologne and perfume you bring.