How Much Medicine Can You Have In Your Carry-On, According To The TSA

When you're traveling, it's important to know that you have all the medication you need with you. But is there a limit to what you can pack in your carry-on bag? If so, what is it?

According to the TSA, you don't have to worry about packing too much, as long as the medication is not a liquid. Their website states that you can take an unlimited amount of medication in solid or pill form, as long as it is screened at the airport.

For liquids, the rules are a little more stringent. The TSA simply outlines that liquid medication is allowed in reasonable quantities for the flight. It is up to you to determine what that is based on your needs. 

You do not need to place the liquid medication in a Ziploc bag, but you do need to let the TSA officer know you have it with you before you start the screening process. Additional screening may be required.

Narcotics are handled differently

The TSA doesn't require that medication be carried in prescription bottles, so feel free to use pill containers or some other method to pack your medication. But some states do have specific laws about narcotics remaining in prescription bottles, so check the laws of your destination state or country before you depart.

When traveling with narcotics, it's also a good idea to bring along any prescription documentation you might have (a photo is fine), as well as a doctor's note, according to Smarter Travel. Since these medications are routinely abused, TSA employees may ask for some evidence that the prescription is yours and that it's up to date. 

If you're traveling with medication that needs to be kept cold, freezer gel packs are fine to take. Just be sure they are at least partially frozen at the time you go through TSA screening.

Also, it's never a bad idea to pack a few extra days' worth of medication when you travel, according to the U.S. State Department. Delays happen, so be prepared.