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Can You Bring a Hair Dryer On a Plane?

By Molly Weinfurter


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The TSA (Transport Security Agency) doesn’t enforce any limits for traveling with corded electrical appliances. Plug-in hair dryers are allowed in checked and hand luggage in any quantity and with no packing restrictions. That’s because when stowed away in luggage, it doesn’t pose any safety risks.

Only wireless hair dryers are restricted because they contain lithium batteries, which are a fire hazard. Portable hair dryers are allowed only in carry-on luggage or personal items, and they’re banned from checked bags. When packed in hand luggage, a safety cover must be installed over the heating element and the turn-on switch to protect it from accidentally activating.

Can You Bring a Hair Dryer On a Plane?

However, it’s worth noting that the FAA doesn’t allow lithium battery-powered devices that are capable of generating a dangerous amount of heat. It’s up to each security officer at the airport to judge what is a dangerous amount of heat and what isn’t. So personally, I would avoid traveling with portable hair dryers because they could be confiscated at the airport, depending on what security officer you encounter.

  • Hand luggage: Hair dryers are allowed in carry-ons and personal items without any restrictions.
  • Checked luggage: Allowed without any restrictions.

Traveling With Blow Dryers Internationally

Similar to the US, there usually aren’t any restrictions for traveling with corded hair dryers internationally – they’re allowed in hand and checked baggage.

Portable hair dryers aren’t specifically mentioned by other flight authorities and airlines, but generally, they aren’t allowed, unless the lithium battery is removable. That’s because when packed in luggage, they could accidentally turn on and cause a fire. So when traveling internationally, it’s best to stick with typical, corded, plug-in hair dryers.

Hair Straighteners And Curling Irons Are Also Allowed On Planes

The rules for traveling with hair straighteners and curling irons are pretty much identical to hair dryers. Corded ones are allowed without any limitations in hand and checked baggage.

Wireless hair straighteners and curling irons powered by lithium batteries or butane gas cartridges are allowed, but only in hand baggage. Any spare gas cartridges are not allowed either in hand or checked baggage – only installed within the device.

How To Pack A Hair Dryer In Luggage

You won’t need to remove hair dryers from your luggage when going through security, so you can pack it deep inside your carry-on or checked baggage. To avoid any accidental damage, wrap it in a soft hoodie or something similar. But other than that, there isn’t really any specific way of packing hair dryers in luggage.

Your Plug-in Hair Dryer Might Not Work In Other Countries

There are two things that can keep your hair dryer from functioning properly in other countries – it might not work with different voltages, or you might not have the correct electrical socket adapter.

In the US, plug-in electronics run on AC 110V, while in Europe and most other countries around the world on 220V. If you’d plug in your 110V hair dryer in 220V, it would break within moments. To keep that from happening, get a dual-voltage hair dryer (There’s “110-220V” or “100-240V” written on it), or get a transformer. You can buy small travel transformers online that will make 110V appliances work on 220V.

The other problem is that there are different electrical sockets all across the world – some with two flat prongs, some with three round ones, and many others. The simplest solution is to buy a small travel adapter that will allow you to plug in your device in most major countries across the world.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I Bring A Hair Dryer On My Vacation?

Most major hotels offer hair dryers, either pre-installed in each room, or upon request at the reception. However, not all of them do. So if having a hair dryer is vitally important to you and if you’ll be staying in private accommodations, like private apartments or Airbnb’s, then you should bring your own blow dryer.

Do I Have To Take Out My Hair Dryer At Security?

Corded hair dryers don’t need to be taken out of your luggage when going through airport security. The airport scanners are advanced enough to see everything inside of your bag perfectly fine, even if it has a corded hair dryer inside.

Wireless hair dryers powered by lithium batteries will need to be removed and placed in a separate screening bin because the lithium batteries interfere with the screening machines. Any electronic device powered by a lithium battery that’s larger than a cell phone needs to be removed from your bag.

Should I Pack My Hair Dryer In Hand Or Checked Luggage?

Expensive hair dryers should preferably be packed in your hand luggage. That’s because checked baggage sometimes gets delayed, lost, or stolen. When packed in hand baggage, you have more control over what happens to your bag because it’s always close to you. So if your checked luggage gets delayed or lost, you’ll still be able to dry your hair at your accommodation.

Are Dyson Hair Dryers Allowed On Planes?

Dyson hair dryers, just like any other brand, are allowed on planes in hand and checked luggage without any restrictions.

Are Travel Hair Dryers Worth It?

Travel hair dryers may be slightly more expensive and not as powerful as regular hair dryers, but they’re better for traveling. That’s because they’re usually much smaller and some of them even fold in half, which allows you to save a lot of space in your luggage. Some regular hair dryers can get fairly massive, which isn’t ideal for traveling.

Another reason why travel hair dryers are better is because nearly all of them are dual voltage. This means that they’ll work in any part of the world – in the USA with 110V as well as Europe with 220V.

What Are The Rules For Traveling With Other Hair Styling Tools And Products?

Corded electric hair styling tools, including electronic hair brushes, flat irons, curling irons, and electric hot rollers are all allowed in hand and checked baggage without restrictions.

Wireless electronics powered by lithium batteries or butane are allowed, but only in hand baggage. Usually, the heating element must be protected from accidentally activating as well, and spare batteries/cartridges aren’t allowed.

Sharp hair styling tools, including scissors and metal rat tail combs, are only allowed in checked baggage because sharp items are banned for hand luggage due to safety concerns.

When it comes to toiletries, all liquids, pastes, gels, creams, and aerosols are restricted to 3.4 oz (100 ml) quantities in hand baggage and they must fit in a single 1-quart/liter bag of toiletries. In checked luggage, larger quantities are allowed. This includes hair gel, hair clay, hairspray, hair dye, dry shampoo and regular shampoo, and other liquids/aerosols.

Solid items, like hair wax, usually aren’t counted as liquids, so they can be also packed in hand luggage without any quantity restrictions.

And lastly, there are additional rules for aerosols and perfumes, including hairspray and dry shampoo. Because they’re flammable, they’re restricted in checked baggage to 18 oz (500 ml) containers or smaller and the total amount of flammable toiletries per passenger can’t exceed 70 oz (2 kg). Furthermore, a safety cap must always be installed on the release nozzle.

Summing Up: Traveling With Hair Dryers

Most typical hair dryers, flat irons, and hair straighteners can be safely packed in hand or checked bags without worrying about breaching any rules. Having said that, bringing them isn’t always a smart choice because you have to make sure that they’ll work in your destination country, and most hotels offer them for free anyway. Plus, hair dryers are also very bulky, so they take up a lot of space in your baggage. If blow drying your hair really is that important to you, then I would recommend getting a small travel hair dryer, which will work in all countries and be much smaller.


  1. https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/whatcanibring/items/hair-straightener-flat-iron-cordless
  2. https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/whatcanibring/items/hair-dryers
  3. https://www.faa.gov/hazmat/packsafe/more_info/?hazmat=20
  4. https://www.iata.org/en/programs/ops-infra/baggage/ped/
  5. https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/whatcanibring/items/scissors
About Molly Weinfurter

Molly Weinfurter is a freelance writer and editor that specializes in family, travel, and animal-related topics.

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