Can you bring bar soap on a plane?


One question that travelers often ask is if they can bring bar soap on a plane. It doesn’t matter whether this is your first trip or you’re an experienced traveler — everyone has wondered about this at some point. 

Yes, you can bring soap on a plane. A soap bar packed in a zip log bag is allowed on a carry-on suitcase and checked luggage. However, liquid soap is subject to the TSA liquids rule, and therefore you’re only allowed to bring 3.4-ounce containers. 

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The airport security line can be a confusing and sometimes frustrating experience. But when you’re going through the process, some things might surprise even seasoned travelers.

So today, we will answer whether or not you can carry a bar of soap onto an airplane.

TSA Bar of Soap Regulations

TSA regulations aren’t as strict as with other materials when it comes to soap. Currently, you can carry a bar of soap with you through airport security without any problems, regardless of size and type. You can even choose to carry it in your carry-on bags or checked luggage — whatever suits you better.

However, please keep in mind that the TSA can be unpredictable sometimes. Even though the official website says that there shouldn’t be any issues if you carry a bar of soap with you, there are stories about people getting stopped because they carried some in their bags. The final word will be on the TSA officer in charge of the security checkpoint at that moment. Still, you will generally be fine if you have soap in your suitcase.

How much bar soap can you bring on a plane?

At present, there are no limitations as to how many bars of soap you can bring on a plane. Therefore, if you want to travel with a big batch of soap (which is unlikely, I believe), you’ll easily go through the security checkpoint.

Please note that, sometimes, you may still be stopped or questioned if you have certain items in your luggage. You can find several testimonials on the internet about people getting stopped for carrying soap in their bags. Although they let them go after a thorough examination, usually there shouldn’t be any problems.

Again, the TSA officer on duty will make the decision. It’s highly recommended to keep the soap in your carry-on bags for convenience and also to make the examination process go smoothly should there be an issue with it. Bear in mind that the TSA is known for stopping people for “suspicious baggage,” even if there aren’t any issues with your belongings.

Does bar soap need to be in quart bags?

If you’re carrying bars of soap on a plane, you don’t need to put them in quart-sized bags because they’re not considered liquids by the TSA. As solid items, you can move them around as convenient to you (keep reading for tips on how to pack bars of soap for travel.) However, things are different when it comes to liquid soap.

You should know that this substance is subject to the TSA liquids rule, which states that you can only carry liquids in 3.4-ounce containers. Each person is allowed to take only one of these bags when they are traveling, and, given their size, you can only travel with about ten 3-oz containers. This rule only applies to carry-on bags.

Bar soaps can be packed as you please. The TSA doesn’t have any specific guidelines regarding carry-on or checked luggage and this type of soap. Therefore, you can do what you want without worrying.

How do you pack a bar of soap for travel?

We have already established that packing one or multiple bars of soap is okay, but given how fragile they are, you should better stow them away with extra care. There’s no need to put much effort or time into this process, though. It is not as complicated as it seems.

Here we describe some tips you can use to pack your bars of soap based on their final purpose. 

Packing soap for personal use

Considering that not all hotels put soap in the bathrooms or that some people are simply not comfortable with using it, bringing along one or two soap bars can be a good option.

Suppose you’re traveling to multiple destinations, and you wouldn’t like to leave the soap all soggy after the first use. But if that were the case, the best thing you can do is store it in a Ziploc bag. Since it isn’t recommended to use the whole bar, you can also cut it up in slices based on the approximate size you think you’ll need. You can do it either at the destination or before you travel.

Now, each time you need to take a shower, you can simply use one slice and then discard it once you’re about to head out. This way, it will last longer, and you won’t have to deal with a soggy soap bar.

Besides Ziploc bags, you can also find cases and other items for this specific purpose that will make taking soap with you to different destinations more convenient.

Packing multiple bars of soap

If you want to travel with a few bars of soap for commercial or gift purposes, you can opt to put them in your carry-on bags or the checked luggage. We recommend that you keep it in your checked baggage — in that case, if you’ve sealed the package correctly, the soap should be safe till you arrive at the destination.

You could place each bar of soap in different small boxes, although it would be best if you kept them in clear bags. This would prevent the packaging from getting ruined at the security checkpoint if you’re stopped for whatever reason.

Can you carry soap on an airplane?

Yes, any person is allowed to carry soap on an airplane. You shouldn’t have any problems when it comes to solid soap as they’re allowed in carry-on and checked baggage. However, if you want to carry liquid soap with you, you should know that there are certain regulations.

Liquid soap is regulated by the TSA liquids rule. According to this norm, you are only allowed to carry liquid soap (or any other liquid, aerosol, or gel) in containers no bigger than 3.4 ounces. You should carry it in a quart-sized bag made of clear plastic. This normative only applies to carry-on bags.

Furthermore, if you want to carry multiple bottles with you, keep in mind that you’re only allowed to have one quart-sized bag. These bags have a capacity of about nine or ten 3-ounce bottles. If you need to carry other liquids with you, they are also subject to this rule. For that reason, most people would recommend sticking to bars of soap as they’re not subject to strict limitations, and you can carry them in a way that is most convenient to you.

Does soap classify as a liquid on planes?

Bars of soap do not classify as a liquid on aircraft for obvious reasons. Thus, they are not subject to the liquids rule, and there are no limits as to how many soap bars you can carry with you while you’re traveling.

On the other hand, liquid soap DOES classify as a liquid on planes, and therefore, the TSA regulates it ONLY if you want to keep it on your carry-on bags. As discussed in the section above, you can only bring liquid soap in 3.4 oz containers, and they should be packed in a quart-sized bag made of clear plastic along with the other liquids, gels, or aerosols you want to travel with. Bear in mind that these bags have a capacity of up to ten containers of this size.

The TSA does not regulate soap if you want to stow it in your checked luggage, so you can proceed as you please regardless of the size or quantity.

Can you bring soap in checked luggage?

Yes, you can bring soap in checked luggage. Regardless of the soap format you want to take with you, the TSA allows it, be that liquid or a bar. 

You can pack them as you find it most convenient, but remember that soap can be quite fragile at times. Make sure you’ve packed well-sealed boxes or bags of soap, so they arrive safely at the destination. Again, be aware that there is always the possibility of being stopped at the security checkpoint for an inspection.

Can you bring soap in carry-on baggage?

You can bring soap with you in carry-on bags without any issues. The TSA doesn’t apply any regulations when it comes to bars, but for the liquid type, you can only bring them in containers of 3.4oz or 100ml as they’re subject to the liquids rule.

Usually, you can bring soap with you without problems, be it on your carry-on bags or checked bags. We still recommend you be prepared in case an inspection is necessary. Many soap enthusiasts around the web have told stories about how they’ve been stopped pretty much every time they want to travel with soap, and the same can happen to you. 

Conclusion

You can travel with soaps without running into any problems, be it on your carry-on bags or checked luggage. While some regulations apply to liquid soap if you want to keep it on your carry-on bags, checked luggage doesn’t have any specific regulation. Therefore, you can pack as much soap as you want for personal or commercial use.

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It’s worth noting that, although the TSA doesn’t have such strict guidelines regarding soap, you should know that it all depends on the TSA officer present at the security checkpoint. So, each case can be different.

Most of the time, all you need to worry about is packaging your soap safely, so it arrives at the destination undamaged.

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