I love to read mysteries novels while I’m flying. But, most travelers still ask if books are allowed on planes.
In this post, we will talk about the various factors that you should consider when it comes to bringing books on board an airplane. In order to allow you to bring books on board, the Transportation Security Administration requires that you check the size and weight of your luggage.
Most airlines allow you to bring a book in your hand, but you will not be counted as part of your allowance. If you bring an umbrella, a jacket, and a book, then you’ll be fine.
Source: TSA official guidelines on Bringing Books on the plane
TSA Book Of Regulations
The good news is that books are allowed to be carried on and checked luggage without specific restrictions.
Usually, after you pass through the security checkpoint, the TSA agent will ask you to remove your books for a manual inspection.
In addition to your personal items, you can also bring additional books into the checkpoint. However, if you have too many books in your bag, the density of these items may prevent the security agent from screening them.
Is It Possible To Bring Books In My Checked Luggage?
Yes, you can bring books in checked baggage when traveling to the US or other international airports. Also, it’s a better idea to carry more books in checked luggage to avoid getting damaged.
Yes, as long as you checked out the books, you can bring them with you on a plane. However, you should make sure that the books are returned within 3 days from the date of their original purchase.
Is It Possible To Read On A Plane?
While most people prefer to watch TV and play games on airplanes, reading books can help keep them occupied and relieve them of their stress.
From healthline, here are several Book Reading Benefits.
- Stress is lessened.
- Improves your capacity to empathize with others
- It expands your vocabulary.
- Aids in the prevention of age-related cognitive decline
- It gets you ready for a nice night’s sleep.
- Aids in the relief of depressive symptoms
- It’s possible that it’ll even help you live longer.
Prepare yourself to enjoy your travel and reading by bringing your book on the plane and ensuring that everything goes as smoothly as possible.
- Prepare your book before leaving for the airport; you can either read a paper book (as stated above) or read on your tablet or phone. Books at the airport can be expensive, and you will be confined to specific categories that you may not enjoy.
- Take a travel pillow with you to help you sleep when you’re exhausted, and you can also use it to support your book. A travel cushion is important not just for reading, but also for making your journey more pleasant.
- Wear noise-cancelling headphones to help you concentrate more by reducing the noise around you.
Is It Possible To Read EBooks On An Aircraft Without Access To The Internet?
Even if the internet is not working on your phone, you can still read eBooks. If you have the book downloaded, you can open it and read it without any problems.
You can bring along a copy of a self-help book or a novel. I usually take the two books because I get tired of reading the self-help book. If you’re not feeling well, I switch to the novel.
What Is The Best Way To Pack Books For A Flight?
Ideally, pack all of your books in a well-organized manner to ensure that they will arrive in good condition. Doing so will prevent them from getting damaged during the flight.
- When traveling with a large number of books, a compact box will suffice.
- Don’t stack your books vertically; they’re more likely to be destroyed if other objects are stacked on top of them; instead, stack them flat.
- To protect books from the sides, use newspaper or cloths; you may also cover any holes if they are too wide.
- Last but not least, remember to mark your box; if you’re putting books in your bag, include a luggage tag, as well as another inside with your name and email address.
Why Does The TSA Ask Passengers To Take Books Out Of Carry-On Bags?
The Transportation Security Administration might ask passengers to remove books from their carry-on bags.
Roxane Gay, an author and former editor of The New Yorker, tweeted that she was asked to remove her books from her carry-on bag after going through security.
Over the past week, many people have been sharing their experience regarding the strange request at the airport.
The Transportation Security Administration explained that it is sometimes necessary to ask passengers to remove items from their bags to screen them.
Although the agency doesn’t specifically ask about books, it has in the past caught people using hollowed out books to carry weapons such as knives and narcotics.
When I Fly, How Many Books Should I bring?
One book is ideal for a flight of about three hours. Since most books are light enough to carry on in your carry-on, bring them with you when you arrive at the airport.
For long flights, you will need two average-sized books to hold your attention. If you have a layover, you’ll also need to tack on some pages.
For international flights, bring over 1300 pages. It’s important to bring these in case you have to check in early.
If you’re planning on going to a country where reading material is hard to come by, bring more books than you can carry-on. For instance, I usually bring over a thousand pages of books to Japan in my checked bag.
If you don’t have the space or inclination to bring a small library, consider traveling with one massive book. It can be a personal reading milestone, and it can reduce your luggage.
Is It Reasonable?
The Transportation Security Administration doesn’t have the authority to search bags. Instead, it can only do so for the safety of the airlines and to protect the public.
This policy would lead to more frequent and systematic exposure to passengers’ reading materials, which would inevitably increase the scrutiny of screeners.
It’s true that the Transportation Security Administration has the authority to search carry-on bags if they see an object that’s not identified. However, the exposure of reading materials is also part of the privacy that’s lost when bag searches are conducted.
The threat to aviation is enough of an issue for screeners to examine a passenger’s bag to see if it contains anything that could be used for explosives. It’s also possible that screeners would want to open the book to see if there are anomalies.
The second justification is to check for something called sheet explosives, which are usually thin and flat explosives that can be hidden inside a sheaf of paper. This is the reason why the 9th Circuit agreed to search for sheet explosives after a man was arrested in 2011.
Other Miscellaneous Items Allowed on the Plane
|Artificial Skeleton Bones||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Balloons (not inflated)||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Battery powered wheel chairs and mobility devices||No||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Belts, Clothes and Shoes||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Biological specimens, non-infectious, in preservative solutions||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Black Jacks (Self-Defense Weapons)||No||Yes||TSA|
|Brass Instruments||Check with Airline||Yes||TSA|
|Car Parts||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Child Car Seat||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Cologne||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Concealer||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Conditioner||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Cremated Remains||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes||TSA|
|Cymbals||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Disassembled computer/computer parts/external hard drives||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Drones, Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS)||Check with Airline||Check with Airline||TSA|
|Drum Sticks (instrument drum set)||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Dry Ice||Check with Airline||Check with Airline||TSA|
|Dry Shampoo (aerosol)||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|E-liquids||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|E-Z Pass Transponders||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Electronic Cigarettes and Vaping Devices||Yes (Special Instructions)||No||TSA|
|Electronic Toothbrush||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Emergency Position-Indicating Radiobeacons (EPIRB)||Check with Airline||Check with Airline||TSA|
|Eye Liners (liquid)||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Foam Toy Sword||No||Yes||TSA|
|Formaldehyde solution, less than 10 percent||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Foundation||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Glass Picture Frame||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Glass Vase (empty)||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Glow Sticks||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Guitar||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Hair Gel||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Hair Spray||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Hair Straightener, flat iron (with cord)||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Hair Texturizer (aerosol)||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Harry Potter wand||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Heated Jackets / Sweaters||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Hoverboards||Check with Airline||Check with Airline||TSA|
|Ice||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes||TSA|
|Laser Hair Remover||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Liquid nitrogen in a dry shipper||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Luggage Protection Covers||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Makeup Remover||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Mascara||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Metal Detector||Check with Airline||Check with Airline||TSA|
|Multi-tools||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes||TSA|
|Nail Polish||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Nail Polish Remover||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Night Vision Goggles||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Perfume||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Permeation devices for calibrating air quality||No||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Segways||Check with Airline||Check with Airline||TSA|
|Shampoo||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Small Pets||Check with Airline||Check with Airline||TSA|
|Snow Globes||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Soap (Liquid)||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Solar Panels||Check with Airline||Check with Airline||TSA|
|Steel Toe Boots||Yes||Yes||TSA|
|Stun Guns/Shocking Devices||No||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Sunscreen||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Tattoo Inks||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Toothpaste||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
|Toy Guns and Weapons||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes||TSA|
|Violins||Yes (Special Instructions)||Yes (Special Instructions)||TSA|
|Weather Barometer or Thermometer (Mercury)||Yes (Special Instructions)||No||TSA|
|Wine bottle||Yes (Less than or equal to 3.4oz/100 ml allowed)||Yes||TSA|
Books and other paper goods can require additional screening when they are brought into the airport. The Transportation Security Administration is testing new rules that would require passengers to remove these items from their carry-on bags.
DHS Secretary John Kelly said that the agency might implement the new policy nationwide. Although tests are currently being conducted in a few airports, he noted that the goal is to find the most effective way to implement the new procedure.
There are many special privacy issues that arise when reading books. In the U.S., there is a long history of protecting one’s privacy through various court decisions and state laws.