Can You Bring Eye Drops on a Plane? What To Know 2023

Can you Bring Eye Drops on a Plane? What You Need to Know

When packing for air travel, you may wonder what items you can bring. If you suffer from dry eye syndrome or use eye drops for other reasons, knowing what you can take through the TSA security checkpoint is important. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

Knowing what you can and cannot bring on an airplane is important to prepare for a flight. The subject of whether or not you can bring eye drops on a plane is one that many passengers have, and we’ll be addressing it in this piece.

The short answer is yes; eye drops are allowed if they meet the TSA guidelines.

TSA Website

Here’s what the TSA says on its website:

Eye Drops are allowed in Carry-On Bags in small quantities and Checked Bags, but the final decision comes from a TSA officer on whether an item is allowed through the checkpoint.

Top Travel Eye Drops

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has strict rules about the types and amounts of liquids for personal use that can be brought on board so everyone can stay safe. Remember to put all liquids, aerosols, gels, creams, and pastes in a clear quart-sized bag for X-ray screening.

You can bring a quart-sized bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams, and pastes in your hand luggage, and all other items must go in your checked luggage under the 3-1-1 guideline.

TSA’s Twitter Answer

Keep the “3-1-1 rule” in mind while packing your eye drops for your travel. Your eye drops can enter your carry-on if their total volume is less than 100 milliliters (3.4 ounces).

Some passengers want quick access to their liquids at all times and pack their quart-sized bag of toiletries at the top of their carry-on.

TSA Guidelines for Eye Drops

  • Eye drops or a saline solution are considered a liquid medicine subject to the 3-1-1 rule for liquids.
  • You can bring a small bottle of eye drops in your carry-on baggage, but it must be 3.4 ounces or less.
  • Good news: travel-size bottles of eye drops are widely available from pharmaceutical companies and can be purchased in smaller bottle sizes, such as 5 or 10-ml bottles.
  • The TSA has specific rules for liquids in your carry-on luggage, including eye drops.
  • According to the TSA, all liquids, aerosols, gels, creams, and pastes must follow the 3-1-1 rule.
  • This means they must be placed in a clear, quart-sized bag and a separate bin for X-ray screening.
can you bring eye drops on a plane

It’s also possible that there will be limits on the kinds of eye drops you’re allowed to bring. You should always double-check with the airline in advance because they may have rules on bringing liquid medications on board or have additional screening from TSA.

Other Liquid Medications

  • In addition to eye drops, other liquid medications, such as nasal sprays, cough syrups, and contact lens solutions, are subject to the 3-1-1 rule.
  • If you’re traveling with more liquids, you should check with the TSA or your airline for specific rules and restrictions.
  • You can also check the TSA website for up-to-date information on what is and isn’t allowed through the security checkpoint.

Other Personal Items

  • In addition to liquids, other personal items, such as mobile phones, laptops, and solid food, are also subject to security screenings.
  • Baby food and breast milk are allowed, but checking with the TSA for specific rules and restrictions is a good idea.
  • Flammable liquids, such as alcohol, hair gels, and nail polish, are prohibited in your carry-on or checked baggage.

Tips for Reducing Liquid Hassles

  • To reduce the number of steps and hassle at the security checkpoint, it’s a good idea to pack your liquids in a clear, quart-sized bag.
  • You may also want to bring a spare pair of contact lenses or glasses and pack a spare laptop bag or mobile phone.

In conclusion, the final decision rests with the TSA security officer, but following the 3-1-1 rule for liquids and checking the TSA website for specific rules and restrictions can help make your next plane trip more stress-free.

can you bring eye drops on a plane

Dry Air In Flights: Why It Matters for Your Eyes

When traveling by plane, it’s important to know how the dry environment at higher altitudes can affect your eyes. The dry air on a long-haul flight can cause travelers’ eyes to dry, making it important to bring extra fluids to keep hydrated and contact solutions. Here’s a closer look at why dry air is a concern for your eyes during a flight:

  • The pressure-controlled cabin of an airplane can lead to dry air, which can worsen dry eye symptoms.
  • If you’re prone to dry eyes, bringing a bottle of artificial tears or a more effective lubricant eye drop on the plane is a good idea.
  • A pair of glasses or a good eye mask can also help to reduce the chances of dry eyes during a long flight.

Normal Conditions

  • Under normal conditions, the air in a flight cabin is very dry.
  • The air pressure and the hot climate can contribute to the dry environment.
  • The high altitudes of international flights can also make the air even drier.

Chances of Dehydration

  • The dry air on a flight can increase the chances of dehydration, leading to travelers’ dry eyes.
  • This condition can cause red, itchy, and uncomfortable eyes, making it difficult to enjoy your flight.

Contact Lens Solution and Eye Drops

  • To combat the dry air in a flight, bringing extra fluids, such as a contact solution or artificial tears is a good idea.
  • These products can help to keep your eyes hydrated and reduce the chances of travelers’ dry eyes.

Types of Beverages in-Flight

  • While alcoholic beverages may be available on international flights, but they can further dehydrate you.
  • It’s a good idea to opt for non-alcoholic beverages, such as water or fruit juice, which can help to keep you hydrated.

Liquid Restrictions

  • Remember that liquid flight restrictions may exist, so check with your airline before packing.
  • Packing small travel bottles of essential liquids, such as contact solution or eye drops, is a good idea.

In short, the dry air in a flight can cause travelers’ eyes to dry and make it uncomfortable to enjoy your flight. Bringing extra fluids and contact solutions can help to reduce the chances of this condition and make your flight more comfortable. Just be sure to check the liquid restrictions for your flight before packing.

What to Do If You Forget Your Eyedrops at Home

There are other solutions for relieving dry eyes during a flight if you don’t have eye drops or aren’t allowed to bring them on board.

Over-the-counter eye drops are widely accessible at airports.

Alternatively, you can drink lots of water to stay hydrated in the air. Keeping yourself hydrated is easy to ease dry eyes and other discomforts that come with flying.

Prescription Drugs

can you bring prescriptions through tsa

Both carry-on and checked luggage can have medicines that can be swallowed in tablet or liquid form.

You should bring your prescription or a note from your doctor outlining why you need to bring the prescription. Always transport medications in their original containers. You should bring enough medication to last the entire journey, just in case of any delays.

Medications that must be inhaled, such as those used for breathing treatments, can be packed in carry-on and checked luggage.

Topical treatments like glaucoma medication, lotions, ointments, and eye drops can be brought in carry-on and checked bags.

It’s important to ensure your prescription medication is kept in your carry-on bag during a flight. Keeping your medication in your carry-on ensures that it stays within reach and that you can access it if needed during the flight. Also, you can still get to your medicines if your checked luggage gets lost or delayed.

Also, some prescription drugs must be kept at a certain temperature, which might not be possible in an airplane’s cargo hold. By keeping your medicine in your carry-on, you can ensure it stays at the right temperature and in good shape. It’s always a good idea to check with your airline and the TSA regarding any restrictions or guidelines for carrying prescription bottles on a flight, as some specific rules may apply.

Prescription medications, whether taken orally, inhaled or used topically, are subject to strict regulations set forth by the TSA (Transportation Security Administration).

You should contact the TSA and your airline in advance to find out whether there are any specific guidelines or limits regarding the transportation of prescriptions. If you have any further questions, call the TSA’s helpline at (866) 289-9673.

Dry Eye Syndrome

When the eyes don’t produce enough or the proper tears, a condition known as “dry eye syndrome” can set in. This may cause a wide range of symptoms, such as:

  • Anxiety and distress
    • Experiencing a sensation of grittiness, dryness, or scratchiness in one’s eyes
    • Pain in the eyes, mild to significant
  • Limitations in Eyesight
    • Inability to focus clearly
    • Illusions of double vision
    • light sensitivity
  • Crying and Sneezing
    • Eyes that cry too much to compensate for the dryness.
    • Eyes that are goopy or crusted up with mucous
  • Additional Signs and Symptoms
    • An increase in ocular redness
    • Eyelid and/or eyeball swelling
    • Feeling like insects are attacking one’s eyes

These signs and symptoms can substantially impact a person’s life, no matter how mild or severe they are. Dry eye syndrome symptoms should prompt a visit to an eye doctor for diagnosis and treatment.

Damage to the cornea caused by dry eye syndrome can sometimes make it impossible to get your vision back. Taking care of your eyes is crucial, so if you have any signs of dry eye syndrome, see a doctor immediately.


Ultimately, you can bring eye drops on a plane, but they must follow the TSA’s 3-1-1 rule for liquids. Your eye drops can enter your carry-on if their total volume is less than 100 milliliters (3.4 ounces). Anything larger than a water bottle must be packed in your checked luggage.

If you don’t have your eye drops or aren’t allowed to carry them on board, you may still take care of your dry eyes by purchasing some at the airport, using a humidifier, putting on your contacts, or drinking plenty of water.

Before you board your flight, check with your airline and the TSA about any limits or suggestions.

Click here to read more about other times, like security checks for alcoholic beverages, baby formula, nail polish remover, drill bits, brass knuckles, sports equipment, ice packs, and stun guns.

1 thought on “Can You Bring Eye Drops on a Plane? What To Know 2023”

  1. I need 3 different kinds of eye drops all packed in individual dose packaging. Can I pack them in a separate plastic bag in my carry on bag or do they have to go in the same plastic bag as all my other liquids?

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