TSA  Precheck Liquids - The 311 Airline Rule

TSA Precheck Liquids - The 311 Airline Rule

Have you heard of the TSA 3-1-1 Liquids Rule and Restrictions through airports? As a traveler, you need to be familiar with this TSA regulation. The 3-1-1 rule commonly referred to as the airline 311 rule states that you can only bring liquids, aerosols, and gels in 3.4-ounce (100ml) or smaller containers, all fitting in a single quart-sized bag. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has strict rules regarding the amount of liquid in carryons liquids, and airlines are required by law to abide by these cabin baggage liquid allowances. These regulations are in place to enhance aviation security and prevent potential threats.

Understanding the TSA 3-1-1 Rule (Airline 311 rule)

The TSA 3-1-1 airline rule dictates your cabin baggage liquid limit and refers to:

  • 3.4 ounces (100 ml) as the maximum liquid container size allowed
  • 1 quart-sized, clear zip-top bag to hold all your liquids
  • 1 bag per passenger for these travel-sized liquids

This cabin luggage liquid limit applies to aerosols, gels, creams, and pastes in addition to standard liquids like water and toiletries.

What Counts as a Liquid?

When packing your carry-on, remember that the following items are considered liquids and subject to the 3-1-1 rule's cabin baggage liquid allowance:

  • Water and other beverages
  • Shampoo, deodorants conditioner, lotions
  • Makeup and cosmetics
  • Toothpaste and mouthwash
  • Soups and sauces
  • Liquid medications

Basically, if it can be poured, pumped, or squeezed, it's a liquid according to the Transportation Security Administration.

Exceptions to the Rule

There are a few exceptions to the amount of liquid in carry on allowed:

  • Baby formula, breast milk, and juice for infants/toddlers are allowed in reasonable quantities
  • Medications and other liquids needed for medical purposes are permitted after additional screening
  • Duty-free liquids purchased internationally can be brought onboard if sealed in a TSA-approved bag

These items must be declared and may require additional screening.

Tips for Packing Liquids

  • Invest in travel-size toiletry bottles that meet the 3.4 oz/100 ml limit
  • Place all liquids in a clear, quart-sized bag near the top of your carry-on
  • Declare larger liquid items like medications to avoid delays
  • Consider packing liquids over 3.4 oz in checked luggage (no liquid limit for checked bags
  • Allow extra time for security checks when traveling with liquids


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    About the Author

    Dr. Dickson W., is an Atlanta-based research scientist, passionate traveler and CEO of Loomis Travel, the direct to customer luggage company you can trust featured below.