Some items cannot be taken onboard an aircraft as they have the potential to be used to harm other passengers and crew. These include:

prohibited items

Some items are classified as prohibited items, weapons and dangerous goods that cannot be carried onboard an aircraft. If you have any of these items in your carry-on baggage, you will need to surrender these at the screening point. Surrendered items are dealt with in accordance with the relevant state and territory legislation.

If in doubt about whether an item can be carried onboard, check with your airline prior to arriving at the airport. In some cases, you may be able to pack the item in your checked baggage.

Prohibited items and weapons

Examples of items that cannot be carried onboard. Items that are a replica or imitations of these items are also prohibited.

Sporting goods, kitchen utensils, tools, and other items with sharp edges or points capable of injuring a person

  • axes, hatchets or similar
  • box cutters
  • crampons
  • darts
  • drills
  • ice axes and ice picks
  • ice skates
  • knives or knife-like (whether or not made of metal), including leather working knives
  • meat cleavers
  • metal cutlery
  • open/straight razors
  • rock climbing equipment such as pitons, hooks, hammers and bolts
  • saws
  • scalpels
  • screwdrivers, crowbars, hammers, pliers and wrenches
  • ski poles
  • utility knives

Sharp items that are not weapons but are capable (with or without modification) of causing harm by penetration

  • letter openers
  • bodkins
  • pointed metal scissors, manicure scissors and scissors with blades more than 6cm long
  • razor blades
  • hypodermic needles (without proof it is medically required)

Blunt items that are able to be used to bludgeon or threaten to bludgeon a person

  • baseball, softball and cricket bats
  • billiard, pool or snooker cues
  • hockey and lacrosse sticks
  • golf clubs
  • pieces of wood, metal or any other materials big enough to threaten a person

Household flammable goods

  • aerosol containers, including spray paint
  • petrol and any other flammable liquid
  • fireworks
  • toy caps

Items capable of being used to restrain a person

  • cable ties
  • handcuffs

Weapons

  • firearms, flares, gun powders
  • daggers, flick-knives, star knives, shuriken throwing irons, stars, harpoons, sabres, swords and swordsticks and similar things and spears
  • disabling and incapacitating chemicals, gases or sprays, such as mace, pepper or capsicum spray, tear gas, acid sprays and animal-repellent sprays
  • billy clubs, leather billies, blackjacks
  • martial arts equipment such as knuckle dusters, clubs, coshes, rice flails and numchucks, kubatons, kubasaunts, night sticks and batons
  • ballistic knives and similar devices designed to discharge a projectile by means of an explosive or other propellant or mechanism, blow pipes, cross‑bows, spear guns, hunting slings, catapults, slingshots, bows and arrows
  • stun guns, cattle prods and tasers
  • dynamite, explosives (plastic or otherwise), blasting caps, blow‑torches, detonators, fuses and detonator cord, explosive flares in any form, grenades, mines and other explosive military stores, smoke cartridges
  • explosive flares in any form
  • smoke cartridges
  • botoxins and infectious substances, eg. preparations of anthrax spores
  • chemicals toxins, eg. chemical warfare agents

Dangerous goods are items or substances that when transported by aircraft are a risk to health, safety, property or the environment

  • explosives
  • compressed gases
  • poisons
  • lithium batteries
  • radioactive materials
  • strong acids
  • aerosols
  • flammable liquids
  • dangerous or volatile chemicals
Dangerous goods

What are dangerous goods?

Dangerous goods are items or substances that when transported by aircraft are a risk to health, safety, property or the environment.

These include obvious things, such as: explosives, radioactive materials, flammable liquids, dangerous or volatile chemicals, strong acids, compressed gases, poisons and aerosols.

Everyday items that can cause problems include toiletries, aerosols, tools and lithium batteries.

Safety is everyone’s responsibility and failing to declare dangerous goods can result in fines or imprisonment.

Contact your airline or CASA with your dangerous goods queries, or the Australian Government’s TravelSECURE site for security related questions. Remember — if in doubt, ask!

Travelling with powders, liquids, aerosols and gels

Domestic flights

Flights within Australia are not subject to restrictions on how much powder, liquid, aerosols and gels you can carry onboard.

However, if you are travelling domestically, but departing from an international terminal (for example, Terminal 1 in Sydney or Terminal 2 in Melbourne—your boarding ticket will confirm if you are departing from an international terminal), you are subject to powder, liquid, aerosol and gel restrictions.

In particular, all aerosol containers must have a fitted cap, or locking device.

International flights

Australia restricts the quantity of liquids, aerosols, gels and certain powders you can carry onboard international flights only. These restrictions do not apply to your checked-in baggage. This applies if you are:

Restrictions on liquids, aerosols and gels also apply if you are arriving on international flights.

These restrictions are strictly applied. Security screening officers have the final say if there is any doubt about what items can be carried onboard.

What are powders, liquids, aerosols and gels?

Powders, liquids, aerosols and gels are:

  • Liquid—a substance that is liquid when at room temperature.
  • Aerosol—a substance kept in a container under pressure.
  • Gel—a jelly-like substance.
  • Powder—fine dry particles produced by the grinding, crushing, or disintegration of a solid substance (for example, flour, sugar, ground coffee, spices, powdered milk, baby formula or cosmetics). Powders may also be presented in clumpy, grain, or compressed material forms.
    Note: Inorganic powder is a powder not consisting of, or derived from, living matter.

Quantity restrictions

Powders

  • There is no limit on organic powders, such as food and powdered baby formula.
  • There are quantity restrictions on the amount of inorganic powder that can be carried, such as salt, talcum powder and sand.
  • Inorganic powders must be in containers of 350 millilitres (volume), 350 grams (weight) or less.
  • The total volume of inorganic powders must not exceed 350 millilitres, 350 grams per person. 
  • Passengers cannot tip powders out to fall under the 350ml threshold as the restriction is calculated on total container volume.

There are no restrictions on the number of containers of inorganic powders per person, provided the total volume of all the containers of inorganic powder is 350 millilitres or less.

At the screening point all powders in your carry-on baggage must be separately presented for screening. Unlike liquids, they do not need to be put in a re-sealable plastic bag.

Liquids, aerosols and gels

  • Liquid, aerosol or gel items must be in containers of 100 millilitres (volume), 100 grams (weight) or less.
  • Containers must fit into one transparent and re-sealable plastic bag like a snap-lock sandwich bag.
  • The four sides of the bag’s sealed area must add up to no more than 80 centimetres (e.g. 20×20 cm or 15×25 cm).
  • Only one bag is allowed per passenger, with exceptions for carers who may carry the bag/s for people in their care, including children.

Containers larger than 100 millilitres or 100 grams, even if only partially-filled, containing liquids, aerosols or gels will not be allowed through the security screening point. For example, a 200 gram toothpaste tube that is half-full will not be permitted.

At the screening point all liquids, aerosols and gels in your carry-on baggage must be separately presented for screening.

Examples of powders

Inorganic powders
(restrictions apply)
Organic powders
(not restricted)
All powders must be separately presented for screening.  The total volume of inorganic powders must not exceed 350 millilitres (volume), 350 grams (weight) in total container (based on container volume/weight).
  • Salt
  • Salt scrub
  • Sand
  • Some talcum powders
  • Some powdered deodorant
  • Certain foot powders
  • Powdered detergent and cleaning products
  • Powdered baby formula
  • Powdered food
  • Coffee
  • Protein powder
  • Flour, spices, sugar
  • Most cosmetics
  • Epsom salt

Some items may not be obvious, such as snow domes or toys and souvenirs with sand or granular material inside. If you are unsure if an item will pass screening, pack it in your checked baggage.

Examples of liquids, aerosols and gels

LiquidsAerosolsGels
Liquid, aerosol or gel items must be in containers of 100 millilitres (volume), 100 grams (weight) or less.
  • Perfume
  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Mouthwash
  • Oils
  • Vinegar
  • Sauces—e.g. salsa, gravy
  • Soups
  • Stews
  • Salad dressing
  • Soft drinks
  • Juice
  • Bottled water
  • Canned food with high liquid content (abalone, sardines, tuna)
  • Creams
  • Liquor—e.g. wine, beer
  • Deodorant
  • Hairspray
  • Sunscreen spray
  • Shaving cream
  • Lipgloss
  • Hairstyling gels
  • Jam
  • Yoghurt
  • Honey
  • Peanut butter
  • Cheese spread
  • Soft cheese—e.g. brie, camembert
  • Vegemite
  • Shaving gel
  • Toothpaste
  • Gel filled tablets—e.g. fish oil tablets

Some items may not be obvious, such as snow domes or toys with liquid inside. If you are unsure if an item will pass screening, pack it in your checked baggage.

Exemptions

Powders

Powdered baby formula, prescription and non-prescription medicines (including special dietary products), and medical items required during a flight are exempt. For medicines and medical items, you will need to present these items along with proof (e.g. doctor’s letter) at the screening point. Cremated human remains are also exempt.

All organic powders are exempt. This includes most powdered foods, coffee, protein powder and baby formula.

Liquids, aerosols and gels

Baby products, prescription and non-prescription medicines (including special dietary products), and medical items required during a flight are exempt. For medicines and medical items, you will need to present these items along with proof (e.g. doctor’s letter) at the screening point.