Are aerosol cans allowed and safe, in checked luggage?

  • Is it allowed to carry aerosol spray cans (deodorant, insect repellent, waterproofer, spray paint, i.e. any common thing you can think of that typically comes in spray bottles) in the checked luggage on airplanes?

    Is it safe to do so?

    My concern is that pressurized containers may not be allowed due to the potential pressure decrease on the plane.

    Answers applicable only to US domestic flights are also welcome.

    I read somewhere that (at least in Europe) companies now travel with the luggage compartment pressurized. I am not sure how accurate this information is though.

    I *think* most cargo holds are now pressurised...

    The people over on Aviation Stack Exchange are of the opinion that most modern cargo holds are pressurized,

    Hi David! Yes, as I said, I asked that question there to help with this question here! :)

  • Mark Mayo

    Mark Mayo Correct answer

    7 years ago

    SafeTravel covers this somewhat, saying you'll want to check the details on your deodorant / other can. If it says it's a flammable product, it may not be permitted in your checked luggage.

    If it's not flammable, however, then it should be fine to travel with, provided the top is on.

    So to be clear - it's the flammability that's more of a concern here, rather than any explosions from pressure - most large passenger plane cargo holds are pressurized. In fact in larger jets, pressurization of the cargo hold is also required to prevent damage to pressure-sensitive goods that might leak, expand, burst or be crushed on re-pressurization.

    I just checked three entirely different products, and all of them have some sort of flammability warning (one says "don't use next to open flame", one says "flammable" and one "extremely flammable"). Must be the gas used to propel the material from the can. Based on your link I get the impression that most sprays would *not* be okay.

    Indeed, which is why I have a small roll-on deodorant for travel with.

    @MarkMayo Since CFCs were banned, pretty much all aerosol sprays use flammable propellants. Are you aware of any country or airline that prohibits aerosol sprays in checked (or even carry-on) luggage? As per my answer, the TSA and British Airways both allow passengers to bring reasonable quantities of aerosol sprays with them.

    @MarkMayo You've misinterpreted the SafeTravel page. It says that personal, medicinal and toilet aerosols are always fine (regardless of whether or not they're flammable; these days, they generally are flammable). You don't need to check your deodorant: it's flammable but you can take it. *Other* aerosols generally can't be brought on planes if they're flammable: for example, spray paint isn't a "personal, medicinal or toilet" item and it is flammable, so you can't bring it on the plane.

    @DavidRicherby I can confirm the US has on multiple occasions taken my aerosol can off me from my carry-on luggage (I believe Australia too, but can't remember for sure). Thinking about it, though, it may be because of the size - they're aerosols, sure, but they also contain more than 100ml of liquid....not sure.

    @MarkMayo A regular deodorant can seems to be 150+ml so that would be the reason there. And the question explicitly refers to checked luggage, for which teh 100ml/3oz rule doesn't apply anyway.

    As it happens, I flew once since asking this question and at the airport they explicitly asked if I have any aerosols. That's because at that location many people had bear sprays which were now allowed in the checked luggage. Once again, it looks like most types are not allowed.

    Had my deodorant taken from cabin baggage due to it being over 100ml today.

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Content dated before 7/24/2021 11:53 AM