Can You Bring Bug Spray On A Plane? TSA Rules For Insect Mosquito Repellant & Aerosol Bug Killer

Last Updated on April 15, 2020

Many a vacation has been ruined by insect bites so insect repellent is always something you should always ask if you need when traveling.

Also, aerosol bug killer can transform a hotel room into somewhere you can actually sleep if there is a mosquito buzzing around. So it’s also a handy product to have when you are traveling.

The question is… can you bring bug spray on a plane? What types of bug spray are allowed? Where you can pack it? And how much you can bring?

This post has all the info you need.

TSA Bug Spray Rules For Repellents

We need to be clear about what type of bug spray we are talking about.

Firstly let’s look inspect repellents. Here is what the TSA has to say:

Bug Repellent In Hand Luggage

So you can pack travel size mosquito repellent or insect repellent in your carry on hand luggage. The bottles must be 3.4 oz or less (100 ml). You should make sure the spray has a cap so it can’t be accidently sprayed.

Since bug spray is a liquid it needs to be packing in your quart-size bag also with your other toiletries. Repel, Off, and Ranger Ready all make travel-sized bug repellent sprays.

You could also save some money by pouring some spray from a larger bottle into an empty travel size bottle.

Most travel size bug repellents are not aerosols, they liquid pump sprays. Sometimes you do get aerosol repellent sprays. These are permitted in hand luggage but again only if they are smaller than 3.4 oz.

A better alternative to liquid bug spray repellent might be bug repellent wipes. Despite being wet wipes are not treated as a liquid so you can pack as many as you like and they don’t need to go in your quart-size toiletries bag.

The TSA officer at the security checkpoint always has the final say about what is allowed on the plane.

Bug Repellent In Checked Luggage

You can pack bug spray in your checked luggage. The repellent type like Repel or Deet. If the bug spray is a hazardous material the maximum size container is 18 oz and you can’t have more than 70 oz in total.

Bug repellent that you spray on your skin or clothes is considered a toiletry. Check the FAA rules for hazmat products.

Most insect repellents in non-aerosol liquid pump sprays and other forms (liquids, lotions, wipes, etc.) are not restricted as hazardous materials – and therefore not subject to size or quantity limits. Some liquid repellents, including some containing Picaridin, are flammable liquids–these are still allowed but must stay within the size and quantity limits mentioned above.

So most liquid-repellent sprays are fine. Aerosol repellent sprays can sometimes be flammable and have restrictions.

Importantly, bug spray that you spray into the air to kill flying insects is not considered a toiletry and has different rules.

TSA Bug Spray Rules For Aerosol Insecticides

If your enquiring about bug spray that you spray in the air to kill bugs like Raid then it’s a different scenario.

Can You Take Aerosol Insecticide In Carry On Luggage?

Aerosol insecticides are not considered to be toiletries. All aerosols that are not medical or toiletries are banned in hand luggage. So you can’t take aerosol insecticide like Raid on a plane even if it’s a travel-sized spray.

Can You Take Insecticide In Checked Luggage?

Aerosol products are usually banned if they are not considered to be medical products or toiletries.

Aerosol insecticide is not a toiletry and it’s often flammable. If your aerosol bug spray is flammable then it’s probably not being to be allowed in your checked bags as Katie discovered:

You can take liquid insecticide in your checked bags so long as it is not a hazmat material.

For example, Francis was given the go-ahead for this gallon container of liquid insecticide:

Sometimes people ask if bug spray will explode on a plane. If you think it’s going to explode you might be thinking about insecticide bug spray and you probably can’t bring it on a plane anyway! And no it wouldn’t explode!

The Verdict

You can take bug spray repellent is small quantities (3.4 oz) in your hand luggage.

You can take repellant in your checked luggage, if it’s marked as flammable it’s only cans that are under 18 oz.

You probably can’t take bug killer spray that you spray in the air either in checked or hand luggage so if you want to kill that mosquito in your hotel room you’ll need to buy some insect killer at your destination.

Bug repellent wipes are probably the most sensible option if you are traveling on an airplane.

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