Items not permitted to be carried on airplanes or helicopters or subject to restrictions

Published on Wednesday 18 October 2023

The carriage by passengers and crew members of items posing a safety and security risk is not permitted or is subject to conditions set by regulation related to air transport. Airlines may be more restrictive than the regulation. It is thus necessary to be aware of the measures they take and to comply with them.

Airbag Application

The Airbag application helps you pack your luggage

In accordance with international regulations relating to passenger air transport, items posing a safety/security risk are not permitted to be carried on an airplane or helicopter or subject to restrictions, whether this luggage is placed in the hold (checked luggage) or placed in the cabin (carry-on luggage) or even on the passengers themselves.

Items that are permitted by the regulations are allowed on-board under specific conditions (nature of the items, location, quantity, packaging, prior information to the airline, etc.) which guarantee the safety and the security of the flight. For example, some items permitted in the cabin are not allowed in the hold (including lithium batteries on their own i.e. batteries not contained in equipment, or spare batteries and e-cigarettes). On the other hand, some other items must be presented in the hold baggage because they are prohibited or limited in the cabin (blunt or sharp objects in particular).

In order to make these provisions accessible, the French Civil Aviation Authority (DGAC) has developed an application:

The aim of this application is not to replace the information that airlines must provide to their passengers about the regulations, but to provide the public with initial information on prohibitions and limitations resulting from safety (dangerous goods) and security regulations applicable from France. Health and customs rules are not covered.

Before planning a flight, it is necessary to be aware of the specific policy of the airline or of the different airlines in the case of connecting flights, as these may be more restrictive than the regulations themselves. Do not hesitate to contact the airlines if you have any doubt or require additional information: they will be able to answer your questions.


  • the information given by the application is valid for travel departing from an airport located in France only (other regulations apply at airports in other countries);
  • regarding the security measures, the final decision to authorize the passenger to take an item into the boarding area lays systematically with the security officers, and prevails over the information available through the application when any doubt remains.

The DGAC reminds passengers that the airline can, due to space constraints in the cabin, require cabin luggage to be transferred to the hold. In the event of such transfer, it is essential to make members of the airline aware of the presence of objects in the baggage which are not allowed in the hold in order to keep them in the cabin. Before performing this transfer, the airline should ask the passenger about the content of the bag.


This section provides you with updated information on carriage restrictions for items in the cabin or hold as well as information on specific areas linked to feedback from airlines or linked to the availability of new items or technologies.


September 2021 : carriage of COVID self-test

Carrying an unused COVID self-test in its original packaging is allowed in luggage in cabin and in the hold. For more information about COVID self-tests, the DGAC invites you to consult the website of the Ministry of Solidarity and Health

February 2021: transfer of baggage from the cabin to the hold

The DGAC wishes to draw your attention to the inherent risk of cabin luggage being transferred to the hold, which the airline may impose for luggage capacity reasons.
Some items that are permitted in the cabin are not allowed in the hold.

Among these are:

  • spare lithium batteries (or batteries on their own),
  • e-cigarettes,
  • power banks.

In the event of a transfer of luggage from the cabin to the hold, it is essential to make members of the airline aware of the presence of objects in the baggage which are not permitted in the hold in order to keep them in the cabin.

Before performing this transfer, the airline should ask the passenger about the content of the bag.

Transfer of your carry-on Luggage to the hold


December 2019: large quantity of mobile phones, lighters and other dangerous goods

DGAC has been informed of cases involving a large quantity of mobile phones with lithium batteries or lighters in passenger luggage.
DGAC recalls that the regulation prohibits passengers (and crew members) from carrying the above mentioned items and any other dangerous goods in carry-on or checked luggage, or on their person, if they are not for personal use. In other words, it is forbidden to transport them for commercial purpose. The non compliance with the regulation will lead at least to their confiscation.


September 2019: e-cigarettes

Incidents involving e-cigarettes (also called electronic cigarettes or vapers) have been reportedly recently to the DGAC:

  • an e-cigarette whose battery was burning was dicovered in a checked luggage after a flight,
  • an e-cigarette was discovered switched on and overheating under a passenger’s seat (burning smell noticed in the cabin)
  • an e-cigarette was discovered switched on and in the pocket of a passenger’s jacket, which started to ignite the jacket (smoke and burning smell noticed in the cabin).

The DGAC wishes to draw your attention to the following regulatory points:

  • e-cigarettes and their spare batteries must not be placed in checked luggage (in the hold).
  • spare batteries must be individually protected against short-circuit (by use of the original retail packaging or by another means to isolate the terminals, e.g., by applying tape to unprotected terminals, or by using protective pouches or separate plastic bags for each battery).

The following values must not be exceeded for each battery:

  • for lithium metal batteries, 2 grammes of lithium;
  • for lithium-ion batteries, a nominal energy of 100 Wh (watt-hours);

The DGAC also reminds you that is not permitted to charge e-cigarettes and/or their batteries on board airplanes or helicopters and that e-cigarettes must be kept switched off.

Lastly, if you drop your e-cigarette, do not move your seat and immediately inform a crew member. Similarly, if you notice a burning smell or smoke, inform immediately a crew member. Appropriate procedures will be applied by crew members, who are trained to manage this type of situation.


April 2019: connected suitcase

A new type of suitcase has appeared: so-called “connected” suitcase.

This is a suitcase equipped with a

  • tracking device, or
  • communication device (via a mobile phone), or
  • device designed to power or recharge other devices (power bank), or
  • motor which moves it.

Even though the power for the tracking and communication functions is provided, for most cases, by standard alkaline batteries, the power banks and motors are generally powered by lithium cells or lithium batteries.

Most of the power banks are not supplied with the suitcase. Power banks are therefore removable and can be carried in the cabin if the limits and the associated carriage conditions are fulfilled.

Be aware that some airlines may refuse to carry in the cabin and in the hold, suitcase with built-in power banks which are therefore non-removable.
It is therefore important to prepare for your flight and to obtain information from the airlines to find out their policy on connected suitcase, particularly those equipped with power banks or batteries powered motors.

Remember to check the lithium battery characteristics before contacting the airlines.


April 2019: aerosols

Several cases of aerosols that were not declared by passengers have been reported to the DGAC since the beginning of the year.

The DGAC wishes to draw your attention to the necessity of complying with the regulation in terms of the carriage of aerosols in the cabin and the hold and any additional restrictions set by airlines.

The DGAC recommends you to contact the airline you plan to fly with in order to avoid any of these aerosols being refused at check-in or boarding.

The DGAC asks you to check the type of aerosol (characteristics, classified as dangerous goods or not, etc.). The safety data sheet available on the manufacturer’s website should in most cases provide the information that you need.

Frequently asked questions on items not permitted to be carried on airplanes or helicopters or subject to restrictions

Useful links

See also

Vidéo - EASA : lithium batteries and other dangerous goods

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Afficher la version texte de la vidéo

Certains produits que nous utilisons dans notre quotidien nous semblent inoffensifs : sprays capillaires, piles au lithium, parfum... Cependant, ils peuvent être très dangereux lorsqu'ils sont transportés par voie aérienne. Cette vidéo sur les marchandises dangereuses a été conçue pour les usagers afin de les informer.

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