Flyin' & knittin' - Australian airlines allow Knitting needles onto planes in carry on

07:59 usefulbox 0 Comments

In Australia, it's been a super no no to take crochet hooks & knitting needles onto planes in your carry on.  For all those high flying knitters out there, there is some good news!  

News broke today that from July 2010 laws against this will be relaxed. 

The Age states "The changes will see passengers again allowed to carry some sharp implements, such as nail files and clippers, umbrellas, crochet and knitting needles on board aircraft from July next year."

Plus the news hit the UK papers as well.  With our very own Anthony Albanese (my old local member) quoted as saying in The Independant"The idea that nail clippers or knitting needles are a bigger threat to airline security than the metal forks which are handed out with meals fails the common sense test,".  Agreed, well said Albo!

I know a certain Mum/Grandma who will be very pleased with this news. I clearly remember her trying to work out how to smuggle her knitting on the plane!

So it got me thinking, what are the laws in other countries, using 3 main countries as an example?

United States
The TSA states: Knitting needles are permitted in your carry-on baggage or checked baggage.

Items needed to pursue a Needlepoint project are permitted in your carry-on baggage or checked baggage with the exception of circular thread cutters or any cutter with a blade contained inside which cannot go through the checkpoint and must go in your checked baggage.

United Kingdom
Per the Heathrow Airport Guide, knitting needles are among the prohibited items along with razor blades & darts (Damn!  I was hoping for a game of darts on the plane!)

AirCanada allows Plastic knitting needles with rounded tips (except for itineraries including the UK)!  Hurrah for Canadians!

So with those rules in mind & travel plans afoot, some tips would be useful in our useful box!

Tips c/- WikiAnswers & added to by me!: 

  • take either (non-metal) circular needles, or wooden straight ones - they are the most obviously 'safe'.
  • try to take the smallest needles you need - the bigger they are the more dangerous they look.  and take your least favourite needles, just in case they are confiscated.
  • take a some back-up entertainment in case you're denied knitting! 
  • don't take any expensive or favourite needles you'd be heartbroken to lose.
  • try not to start the project until you're on the plane - that way if the needles are confiscated at least you won't have any work on them to get unraveled in your bag!
  • don't argue with the security or airline staff - their word is final, and you'll just have to lump it. Kicking up a fuss could mean you won't be allowed on your flight, or worse! 
  • pack some spare needles in your checked luggage, then at least you won't be without knitting your whole trip!
  • take thread to move live stitches onto if you cannot continue to your flight with your work in progress.
  • in some cases you may be permitted to mail your needles back to yourself, so bring an appropriate self addresses envelope.
  • And always check your airlines regulations before you leave.  Might save alot of worry.