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When transporting any food item, the airline you are flying on has the final say on what is allowed on their flights. So please, check with your airline’s policies for transporting food. Following are some basic guidelines from TSA.

Alcohol- per TSA

  • You can carry on 3.4 fluid ounces of alcohol or less.
  • You can place alcohol in checked bags as long as it is 5 liters (1.3 gallons) or less and contains 70% of alcohol or less. It must be unopened. Beverages with 24% or less alcohol are not subject to limitations in checked bags.
  • Those mini bottles can go into your carry-on. However, they must be able to fit into a single quart-sized bag.
  • No beverages over 140 proof are allowed.

Solid food items (not liquids or gels) can be transported in either your carry-on or checked bags. Liquid or gel food items larger than 3.4 oz are not allowed in carry-on bags and should be placed in your checked bags if possible.

TSA officers may instruct travelers to separate items from carry-on bags such as foods, powders, and any materials obstructing the X-ray machine images. Travelers are encouraged to keep their bags uncluttered to ease the screening process and keep the lines moving.

Thanksgiving foods allowed through a TSA checkpoint

  • Baked goods. Homemade or store-bought pies, cakes, cookies, brownies, and other sweet treats.
  • Meat. Turkey, chicken, ham, steak. Frozen, cooked, or uncooked.
  • Stuffing. Cooked, uncooked, in a box or a bag.
  • Casseroles. Traditional green beans and onion straws or something more exotic.
  • Mac ‘n Cheese. Cooked in a pan or traveling with the ingredients to cook it at your destination.
  • Fresh vegetables. Potatoes, yams, broccoli, green beans, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, beets, radishes, carrots, squash, and greens.
  • Fresh fruit. Apples, pears, pineapple, lemons, limes, cranberries, blueberries, strawberries, bananas, kiwi. 
  • Candy.
  • Spices.

Thanksgiving foods that should be carefully packed with your checked baggage

  • Cranberry sauce. Homemade or canned are spreadable, so check them.
  • Gravy. Homemade or in a jar/can.
  • Wine, champagne, sparkling apple cider.
  • Canned fruit or vegetables. It’s got liquid in the can, so check them.
  • Preserves, jams, and jellies. They are spreadable, so best to check them.
  • Maple syrup.

Keep in mind perishable foods need to be kept cold. If the food is packed with ice or ice packs in a cooler or another container, the ice or ice packs must be completely frozen when brought through screening. If the ice or ice packs are partially melted and have any liquid at the bottom of the container, they will not be permitted. You also can pack frozen perishables in your carry-on or checked bags in dry ice. The FAA limits you to five pounds of dry ice properly packaged (vented) and labeled.

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