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3-1-1 Tip: How to Carry on More Than Three Ounces


As a law-abiding citizen, you have been duly adhering to the TSA’s 3-1-1 liquids rule, strictly packing toiletries of 3 ounces or less and placing those containers in a clear zip-top bag, right? But wait, if you’ve been doing that you’re actually cheating yourself out of a precious extra four-tenths of an ounce liquid per bottle. That’s right, the “3” in the “3-1-1” liquid ban rule actually stands for 100 milliliters, or 3.4 ounces.


Additionally, reasonable amounts of saline solution, doctor-prescribed medications, baby formula, and breast milk are among the few items that aren’t subjected to the liquid ban. Do, however, make it a point to declare such liquids to a TSA agent as soon as you arrive at the security checkpoint.

Pack It?

When in doubt, refer to the TSA’s prohibited-items list, or simply pack the liquids in your checked luggage. But first, print out SmarterTravel’s Airline Fees: The Ultimate Guide, a handy cheat-sheet to checked-bag fees.


I’ve compiled a listing of related content on the 3-1-1 liquid rule, getting efficiently through airport security, and packing tips to avoid extra baggage fees:

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