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Can You Take Fishing Equipment on a Plane?

Fishing is becoming an increasingly popular pastime for both young and old people alike. Very few activities are as satisfying as going to a new body of water and discovering its wildlife beneath.

In order to discover such new sights, however, you need to travel to it as well. This brings us to the question,

Can you take fishing equipment on a plane?

Fishing equipment such as rods, reels, and small fishing lures can be carried into the plane as checked or carry-on luggage, provided they are properly wrapped and stored securely. Anything sharp or unusual sized needs further research for TSA and airline carrier will always have the final say.

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The Transportation Security Association (TSA) has a pretty airtight system into what they will allow up the plane and what will never be accepted.

However, there are some grey areas that need further investigation. It also depends on how lenient your airline and TSA agent are going to be.

TSA size limits:

When packing for a trip, you should make sure to know how much weight you are allowed to carry and what the oversized rates are.

If an item’s single side is longer than a meter, that is 1000 mm or 39 inches (wheels, handles, and packaging included) then it will count as an oversized item for which you will have to pay a fee. This is a separate handling fee that is paid per item.

The typical limits are:

  • Carry on size: 22x14x9 inches
  • Carry on weight: 20 to 40 pounds
  • Checked baggage size: 27x21x14 inches
  • Checked weight: 40 to 50 pounds

The rates or limits might be different for each carrier, so doing your own research is highly encouraged.

Can you take fishing lures on a plane?

TSA flags fishing lures as dangerous sharp objects and so needs to be handled accordingly. In order to be allowed on board, the object needs to be properly covered, safely wrapped, and packed into the checked luggage. That means fishing lures are not allowed as carry-ons unless categorized “small”.

Can you take fishing lures in carry-on luggage?

The official TSA site dictates that small fishing lures are allowed in both carry-on bags and checked bags. However, if it is classified as a large fish hook, it will not be allowed to be taken in carry-ons.

Basically, if it can even be the slightest security risk, it has to be packed tightly in checked bags and not carry-ons. If you still want to, check with the airline of your choosing and its guideline. 

If it is positive, print it out in case you meet an unwilling agent, so you are prepared for the conversation.

Can you take fishing lures in checked luggage?

Following the TSA guideline, fishing lures can comfortably be packed in your checked luggage. Just to make sure nothing pulls or snags, it is advised to pack it in properly or securely.

You might get lucky and meet a TSA officer who also enjoys fishing and understands the nuances of lures and how they are harmless, but the chances are that is highly unlikely. So, it is better to be safe than sorry in this case.

Extra tip: Pack enough basic assortment flies for a single day fishing (about 12 to 18 of them) in a Ziplock bag or fly box and carry it with you so you can at least fish for a day or two in case there is a delay.

Can you take a fishing rod on a plane?

Yes, but it depends on the rod working with size and weight restrictions. If it exceeds said restrictions for carry-on, it will need to be added to your checked baggage which has its own restrictions as well. Ultimately, it is the carrier and agent’s decision whether it will be accepted as a carry-on.

Can you take fishing rods in carry-on luggage?

Yes, you can take fishing rods in carry-on luggage. However, like all items and begs allowed on board, there are the size and weight limits that you must abide by.

There is good news though, if it does not fit into the overhead compartment, you can carry it beside you while in motion. This will bring you peace regarding damage and theft as well.

You have to carry your rod in a tube or case which might be longer than the size allowed, so make sure to check with the TSA and airline carrier guidelines. If lucky, the agent will listen to your explanation and allow it on board, but better safe than sorry.

Can you take fishing rods in checked luggage?

If you would rather not risk it with the carry-on confusion, you can opt for checked luggage, for yes, they are permitted. Whatever problems you might have faced in the carry-on, checked luggage takes care of them all.

The only thing you have to heed mind is that some carriers might accept it as specialty baggage which may or may not have their own separate set of weight and size limits.

Extra tip: Look to invest in a collapsible fishing rod if you are worried about the rod size being inappropriate or hassle inviting. TSA will accept them as travel rods for carry-ons.

Can you take a fishing rod case on a plane?

Yes, you can take a fishing rod case on a plane, as both carry-on and checked luggage. However, there is a separate size limit, allowing cases or tubes up to 115 or even 126 inches. There may or may not be additional charges for it, though, so it is good to be prepared.

Can you take a fishing rod case in carry-on luggage?

Yes, you can take a fishing rod case as a piece of carry-on luggage, but the same with actual fishing rods- the dimension and weight of the case matters.

If it can fit in the overhang compartment and the carrier agent allowed it, you are good to go!

Can you take a fishing rod case in checked luggage?

As mentioned above, fishing rod cases are usually accepted as specialty baggage with costs. It is the preferred way as well, for transport in checked baggage means less hassle with carry-on’s shared space.

It also lets you avoid the “It is carrying a fishing rod and not a dangerous weapon” conversation with your TSA official.

Extra tip: when buying a case or tube, consider a hard-shell that allowed you to use a TSA-approved padlock. If you have a soft-shell, don’t worry- you can just drill two holes into it so you can lock the zipper in place. This method will help prevent baggage theft to the best of its ability.

Can you take a fishing pole on a plane?

Yes, you can take fishing pokes on a plane according to the TSA guidelines published. They are allowed both in carry-on and checked bags but it is highly advised to check with the preferred airline so it remains inside the size and weight limitation for both options.

Can you take the fishing pole in carry-on luggage?

Yes, TSA allows its passengers to carry the pole in their carry-on luggage. Like the rest of the equipment mentioned before, since the fishing pole is something that is rather lengthy- you have to make sure it fits the overhead cubicle without impeaching others’ space.

If it is valuable, it is understandable you would want to carry it with you, so most airlines are lenient with fishing pole carriage.

Can you take the fishing pole in checked luggage?

Fishing poles can easily be in checked luggage though most prefer it to be on them as carry-ons. However, if you still opt for it to be in your checked luggage, you are now armed with the knowledge that TSA has given you the green light.

Extra tip: You should always do your research to see that the case or bag you are carrying the rod and pole in fits within the size limitations of carry-on objects.

Can you take fishing reels on a plane?

Yes, you can take your fishing reels on a plane. It is advised to keep it on you as a carry-on since it’s one of the most expensive equipments of fishing gear. You can also take it in your checked bag, but make sure it is securely packed to ensure least to no damage.

Can you take fishing reels in carry-on luggage?

It is actually preferred that you carry your fishing reels with you when boarding the plane. This is because checked luggage can be treated rather roughly, so TSA advocates for keeping the expensive reels in your carry-on luggage.

However, the agent might take an issue with the reel being spooled or having its line attached, so it would be better if you unspool it. 

Also, do not carry it in your hands or pocket, despite how expensive it is. It has to be packed inside your carry-on bag. 

Can you take fishing reels in checked luggage?

If you would still like your fishing reel to be in your checked luggage, you can take it. Some reels are bigger than others after all (Trolling reels), so the choice is understandable. 

Since it is a rather precious tool, it is suggested that you pack it securely and tightly- may be in its original case and padded with clothes- to prevent loss or damages. They are sturdy, but there’s nothing wrong with being extra careful when handling them.

Can you take fishing lines on a plane?

Yes, fishing lines are allowed on a plane. While all fishing lines are okay to go in your checked baggage, there are some types of fishing lines (such as Braided) that are not allowed in your carry-on bags. In order to not risk it, it is better to just pack your fishing lines in the checked baggage.

Can you take the fishing line in carry-on luggage?

Technically, yes, you can take your fishing line the luggage you are carrying onto the plane. Most fishermen have noticed that it depends on the TSA agent you encounter, which is basically saying you are living it up to fate.

Since precautions are better for preventions, it is rather that you do not carry it in your carry-on luggage.

Can you take the fishing line in checked luggage?

As mentioned earlier, some fishing lines are considered unacceptable by TSA (Braided fishing line being an infamous example) to be allowed in your carry-on. This is why professionals recommend packing your fishing line, no matter what kind it is, into your checked baggage.

This will make sure you do not have to explain yourself to the TSA agent on your flight and delaying it.

Since fishing lines are small and light, the chances of it being unsafe are low, and you simultaneously do not have to worry about overweight charges. Considering it all, it is obvious the safer and smarter bet is to pack your fishing line in the checked luggage.

Can you take fishing gear on a plane?

TSA is rather inconsistent about what fishing gear is allowed onto the plane as check-in, but most fishing gears are okay to go in checked luggage. Fishing gear, also known as the fishing tackle, can be deemed dangerous and so must be securely and properly packed in the checked baggage.

Can you take fishing gear in your carry-on luggage?

There are some fishermen who say they have faced no problems with TSA when carrying fishing gear and tackle with them. But most often than not, you will be stopped, and your gear can and probably will be confiscated. 

TSA classifies tackle as “sharp” and so will be considered a dangerous weapon. Therefore it is better not to take your fishing gear in your carry-on luggage.

Can you take fishing gear in checked luggage?

Yes, you can take fishing gear in your checked luggage.

As long as it is packed securely and contained properly, fishing gear can be taken in your checked luggage as a sheathed, wrapped item.

Extra tip:  If you are wary about your fishing gear’s safety in the checked luggage, you might want to look into traveler’s insurance that has the “all risks covered” option. This way, you can at least be refunded if something were to happen to your expensive and precious gear.

Can you take fishing hooks on a plane?

TSA allows small flies and hooks into your carry-on package, but larger tools will be seen as a safety risk. However, the sizes are up to interpretation, so it primarily depends on the agent screening your bags that particular day. Usually, size 8 or smaller is okay for carry-on.

Can you take fishing hooks in carry-on luggage?

As mentioned earlier, small hooks are okay to be added to your carry-on, according to TSA.

Now the question arises, what exactly is a small hook?

Usually, traveling fishermen say sizes 8 or smaller are okay by TSA standards. Yet, there are still instances where even hooks in size 4 have been confiscated. So, it is ultimately a luck thing. 

Can you take fishing hooks in checked luggage?

If even you can tell your fishing hooks are on the larger or bigger size, it is better to put them in your checked luggage. It is not worth losing it after your agent determines the hook to be a dangerous weapon.

TSA has always stated sharp objects should be packed into the checked baggage, so it is safe to assume you can take your fishing hook in yours as well.

Extra Tip: Keep your hooks and flies in a container, preferably the one you bought them in, so they are contained securely and can be accessed easily so the TSA official can check it if they wish to.

Can you take a fishing magnet on a plane?

Fishing magnets are low-powered enough to be brought on a plane, despite magnets being on the international dangerous goods manual. TSA declared magnets to be allowed in both carry-on and checked bags, so fishing magnets should be okay to be carried too.

Can you take a fishing magnet in carry-on luggage?

It honestly depends on the size of the magnet you wish to carry, for your TSA agent might deem it unworthy. However, it should be noted that the official TSA website says magnets can be put in your carry-on.

Can you take a fishing magnet in checked luggage?

TSA has also declared magnets to be allowed in your checked baggage, so the fishing magnet should be good to go. That being said, you should always make sure it is properly wrapped, sheathed, and protected to prevent any further hassle.

Can you take a fishing knife on a plane?

TSA allows knives on the plane but only in checked bags. Fishing knives, similarly, will not be allowed in your carry-on. Some airlines allow small knives, but they are still uncertain, so it is better to pack your knife into the checked bag instead of your carry-on.

Can you take a fishing knife in carry-on luggage?

No, the USA does not allow knives in the carry-on unless it is a small plastic butter knife.

Can you take a fishing knife in checked luggage?

Yes, TSA allows you to pack knives in your checked luggage. All that you have to do is make sure they are packed safely so the agent can inspect them if they need to.

You don’t necessarily have to, but it is recommended that you declare it as well.

How do you travel with fishing gear?

Traveling with fishing gear is rather easy once you get to it. All that you have to do is read up on what your airline allows you to carry and pack accordingly.

The general rule of thumb is,

  • if it exceeds the size limit, you might need to pay for specialty baggage
  • sharp objects need to completely wrapped and packed securely
  • if you think TSA will have a problem with it, it is murphy’s law, and they probably will.

Basically, follow the TSA guidelines and protocols, print them out or keep them with you if need and it should be smooth sailing.

What Airlines allow fishing equipment on a plane?

You can find out what items are allowed onboard on the airlines’ webpage when you book, and you can always contact them if you are confused about anything. That being said, the airlines below are known to allow fishing equipment onboard.

  • Delta 
  • Jet Blue
  • Alaska
  • American
  • Hawaiin
  • Southwest
  • United

Fishing equipment entails all the tools and gears related to fishing, and making sure they are travel-friendly is something you should keep in mind if you wish to fly to fish somewhere new.

TSA has specific procedures for some of them, but the rest are touch and go- which is why it is highly recommended to research properly.

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