So you are going traveling and want to know if you can bring contact solution on the airplane.
Let’s take a look at the rules.
TSA Contact Lens Solution Rules
The Transportation Security Administration usually restricts liquids, gels, and aerosols to containers 3.4 ounces or less. This is the so-called “3-1-1 Rule”.
I checked the TSA website to see what they say about solution for contact lenses.
Firstly, you can pack contact lens solution in checked luggage without restriction.
If you want to bring contact lens solution on a plane in your carry-on bag you have two choices.
- Pack bottles of solution that are 3.4 oz or less in your one quart-size plastic bag. You don’t need to inform the TSA security officers.
- Pack larger bottles of contact lens solution and you do need to inform the TSA security officer at the checkpoint. The TSA will perform additional screening and check any medically necessary liquids.
Travel Size Saline Solution
Normally with travel liquids I recommend decanting from larger bottles into smaller travel size bottles.
But with contact solution you need to keep it clean and sterile so new unopened bottles are better.
If you bring travel size bottles and pack them in your one quart-size bag then you won’t need to alert the TSA officer that you are carrying an oversize liquid.
The airport security screening process is stressful enough so packing a travel-sized bottle of contact lens solution in your quart-size bag is an easy solution.
One of these little bottles should last 1 person about 1 month.
Also, you’ll have a little peace of mind if you pack at least 1 travel-size bottle.
If you come across a TSA officer that doesn’t know about the medical liquids exemption and confiscates the large bottle you’ll still have the little bottle as a fallback.
Still Unsure? Ask The TSA
If you have further questions about what you can bring on a plane it’s easy to ask the TSA.
Just hop of Twitter and write to @AskTSA and they’ll get back to you quickly. It helps if you include a photo of the item you want to bring.
Mike asked if saline solution was exempt form the 3.4 ounce limit in carry-on bags.
The TSA replied that “bottles of saline solution are allowed in carry-on bags. You don’t have to place these items in your quart-sized liquids bag”.
This passenger asked about bringing daily disposable contact lenses in her carry-on bag.
Even though bubble packs of daily contact lenses contain liquid they don’t need to be packed in your plastic liquids bag.
In fact any liquid should be fine to bring on a plane so long as it is medically neccessary.
Patty was bringing eye drops and nasal spray and was told that “medications don’t have to be placed in your quart-sized bag”.
Because contact lens solution is a medically necessary liquid you can bring it on the plane in quantities in excess of 3.4 ounces.
However this means that you need to inform the security officer at the checkpoint and have them perform additional screening on your bottle.
If 3.4 oz of solution will be a sufficient amount for your trip it might be easier just to pack a travel size bottle.
P.S. Don’t forget to pack your glasses just in case you need them.