Keep Calm & Travel On: Tips for Flying with Gifts

 

When celebrating the holidays away from home, traveling with toys in tow can be a bit of a struggle. Whether you decide to pack, ship, or carry-on your gifts, we’ve come up with a few tips to help you avoid any unnecessary travel headaches.

To Wrap, or Not to Wrap?
Wrapped gifts are allowed in carry-ons and checked luggage, but keep in mind that TSA officials reserve the right to undo all your handiwork during security inspections. Gifts in your checked luggage are less likely to be unwrapped, but your best bet is to save the wrapping for your arrival – unless you’re flying on Virgin Atlantic, who (for just $2 per package) will wrap presents for departing passengers who have gone through security.

The Outlaws.
Wrapped or unwrapped, toys that resemble weapons are a no-no. And the same goes for sports equipment like baseball bats, golf clubs, and hockey sticks. Liquids are also prohibited – and yes, that even includes snow globes. For a full list of restricted items, go here.

Ship, Ship, Hooray!
Unlike your airline, FedEx Ground® includes insurance and tracking – so in most cases, you’re probably better off if FedEx loses your gift than if your airline does (plus, you can wrap them). Another smart idea is to order gifts online (Rue La La, anyone?) and have them shipped directly to your destination.

Home Sweet Home.
Remember, getting there is just half the battle. To bring the gifts you received back home, pack an extra duffle in your suitcase and surround fragile items with clothing.

By Keriann Coffey, Associate Blog Editor

Have a tip for traveling with gifts? Share it in the comments below, or tweet us at @ruelala.

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December 12, 2012