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Carry-On Traveling

by Brittany Kubicko

Photography by Kelly Markus

One of the most essential parts of preparing for a trip is packing your carry-on. With most airlines allowing at least one carry-on item at no extra charge, it has become a staple for traveling. All the fundamentals you may need, either during your flight or afterwards, should be on hand just in case the checked luggage gets lost (which is never a pleasant situation).

With a well-packed carry-on, traveling is a breeze. However, before packing your carry-on, you need to be aware of what can or cannot be packed.

Fortunately, the Buzz is here with guidelines on all the carry-on restrictions from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and key essentials needed in all carry-ons. With this list, traveling with a carry-on will become much easier.


1. Each airline has its own set of restrictions on the size of the carry-on. Most carry-ons have a size restriction of bags no larger than 22 inches by 14 inches by 9 inches so that they can fit in the plane’s overhead bins. Before packing your bag, make sure it fits the airline’s requirements so that it you will not be charged extra.

2. Liquids are allowed on flights, but there are restrictions. All liquids must be in quantities less than 3.4 ounces (100 milliliters), and all liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes must fit into a quart-sized bag. This is called the 3-1-1 Rule, and the TSA enforces this rule strictly on all flights.

3. Items such as fireworks, firearms, self-defense objects such as nun chucks and brass knuckles, scissors, knives and hammers are prohibited from all carry-ons. The TSA website provides a whole list of items that are prohibited from a carry-on.

4. In addition to bringing one carry-on item, on most airlines, each person is allowed to bring a personal item with them on a flight. A personal item can include items such as a handbag or a briefcase.

Carry-On Essentials

1. Forms of identification (driver’s license, passport, etc.): these are always needed in order to check into a flight and to go through security. These forms of ID can be accessible in a wallet or in another place of storage. Wherever it is, it should be easily accessible.

2. Money: again, easily accessible in a wallet or another place of storage. Credit and debit cards should also be carried with money in a carry-on.

3. Important medications: if the medication requires a needle or is a liquid, a letter from a doctor is required in order for it to be stored in your carry-on.

4. All electronics with their respective chargers and cords

5. Any item that is considered fragile

6. Toiletries (following the 3-1-1 rule mentioned above)

7. Change of clothes

8. Books, magazines and things that can be used during the duration of the flight to stay occupied

9. Food and drink, purchased after going through security (any beverage that is in the carry-on before going through security will be confiscated)

10. Don’t forget your plane ticket!

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