Can I take knitting needles on a plane? Our guide on how to travel with knitting needles
With the holiday season upon us, many knitters and crocheters are packing their bags to visit family far and wide. Should you be fretting about taking knitting needles on a plane? Here are some tips on how to travel with projects happily and stress-free.
Are knitting needles allowed on a plane?
Yes, most travel agencies and airlines allow you to take knitting needles on to a plane. At LoveKnitting we were thrilled to discover that knitting needles are not banned on flights. Here is confirmation from the travel section of the United Kingdom government web page, the Transportation Security Administration in the USA, and the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority, all in agreement that you can take knitting needles on a plane.
Can I take large knitting needles and scissors in my carry on luggage?
We’ve spoken with a lot of knitters around the world, and even though the main travel agencies agree that knitting needles (and crochet hooks) are acceptable in carry on luggage, you still have to get through the security checkpoint, and the security guards have the final say over what gets through. Even though scissors with blades under 4 inches long are supposedly allowed on a flight, it’s unlikely that you’ll get through with them. Sometimes, security guards will think that your needles look like a threat, and they will confiscate them.
Essential tools for knitting on the go
We recommend taking bamboo or wooden needles on a flight – they look less threatening than their metal counterparts. We also recommend not taking your favorite set of needles, just in case they do get confiscated. Stick with circular needles for more compact knitting; remember that you can knit flat with circulars just by turning the way you would with single pointed needles. These Addi circular needles are economically priced as well as a delight to knit with – a win-win situation!
Travel can be chaotic. Whether you’re a 20-something heading home for the holidays from university, or a parent with small children, getting to the airport and through security is enough to derail any project. Add in the possibility of having the dreaded middle seat, and you’ll forget where you were in the pattern in no time. Use some stitch markers to mark important places in the pattern and help you keep your place. We love these triangular Clover stitch markers, which come in 3 different sizes to fit almost any project.
If you’re halfway through a project that you want to take with you on a plane, take our advice and run a lifeline through your stitches with some waste yarn or dental floss before you leave for the airport. In the (hopefully unlikely) instance that your needles do get confiscated, your project won’t be ruined. Read more about how to run a lifeline.
Taking any kind of scissors in your carry on luggage is a big risk, no matter what shape or size. We’ve heard tales of even the tiniest scissors being confiscated at security checkpoints! To be safe, be clever – take some dental floss with you. The tiny ridge that’s used to cut the floss will cut through most yarns!
Remember, not all airports and airlines are alike. While many knitters have never encountered a problem taking their knitting needles on a plane, some have. If you’re unsure, it’s best to contact your airport and ask what their policies are. Happy holidays, and happy knitting!
Last updated: June 27th, 2018.