Can You Bring Ice Packs On A Plane? Complete Guide

Traveling with medicines can be tough. That too with the ones who you need to keep cold. But many of us are not aware of the rules bringing these ice packs to a plane.

With many other questions arising, the most common one to occur is can you bring ice packs on a plane? Are these considered liquids? Do we need to follow the liquid rule for this?

This and many more. So if you are planning your trip with an ice pack for multiple reasons, dig into the following content to know the packing hacks.

Can you bring ice packs on a plane?

The good news is yes, but with some tips, you need to follow. As per the TSA rules, you can bring your ice packs on a plane, both in checked baggage and carry-on.

Considering the type of ice packs, some of them are gel based while others are regular ones. For the regular ones, your ice packs must be in solid form to pass through the security easily.

The gel-based ones are the ones that need to follow the liquid rule. The 311 rules do not allow the passenger to carry liquid of more than 3.4oz or 100ml of quantity. Additionally, these need to be in quart-sized bags for the spilling reasons

However, in any circumstances, you need to check your ice packs for screening at the airport.

What does TSA have to say about it?

The transportation security association is all about checking through your luggage for safety reasons. Therefore the association prefers you to follow some packing rules during the check-in.

According to the TSA rules, ice packs are allowed on both carry-on and checked baggage. However, for checked baggage, there are some exceptions that you need to follow for a safe and easy security pass.


Can you bring ice packs in carry-on?

The TSA rules do not allow you to keep the liquids in carrying on more than 3.4oz. Moreover, all liquid essentials must be packed in quart-sized toiletries.

However, there are still chances you to get through the security check if you are able to make it through the security check with frozen ice packs. This can be only done when you are a few steps away from the airport.

According to the liquid rules, if your item is frozen while you pass through the security check, this does not have to follow the 100ml rule.

Or you can still have more than 1 ice pack in a quarter-sized bag to fulfill the 311 rule.

If you are keeping a gel or an ice pack for any pain or injury itself, your gel pack is free to go even if it’s not frozen.

Can you bring ice packs in checked baggage?

If the main reason for taking ice packs on a plane is food storage, checked baggage is your best bet. There is no liquid rule implication over ice packs in checked baggage. Additionally, you can keep any amount of ice packs or gel packs in your checked baggage. All you have to do is to place these packs along with the storage food in a separate bin for checking purposes

Do ice packs follow the 311 rules of TSA?

Ice packs if not frozen do follow the 311 liquid rules. However, this rule is exempted when you are taking ice packs for pain healing such as sorrow joints.

When packed in checked baggage, these ice packs do not have to follow the liquid rule and can be kept in bulk.

For other purposes like keeping the baby formula or the breast milk cold, these ice packs are expected from the liquid rule.

What are the exceptions for taking ice packs on a plane in carry-on?

Here are the quick grabs of bringing the ice packs to the Airplane in a liquid state.

  • The ice packs must be used for medical storage like insulin
  • The ice packs solely used the healing purposes themselves
  • These must be frozen until they pass the security check.
  • If in the liquid phase, these must be packed in a quart-sized packet.

To justify these situations in a clear way, here are some quick queries from the passengers themselves

A passenger asked if she can bring frozen bacon along with an ice block. To which the TSA assured the allowance but only in the solid state.



In another query, a passenger wants to know if her husband can carry an ice pack to keep his insulin cool. To which the TSA replied that carrying ice packs for medicinal purposes is exempt from the liquid rule, assuring the allowance here as well.



Are ice packs allowed in checked baggage?

Ice packs or gel packs are allowed in the checked baggage without a limit to their numbers. You can take the packs through the security check. As the checked baggage is clearly handled hardly, your ice packs must be in a spill-proof packing and you can simply try the dry ice for keeping your food safe.

Taking the ice packs for food safety reasons will not create quality issues as you squeeze right through the check. Neither it will be forced by the liquid rules of TSA.

Can you bring gel ice packs on a plane?

Gel packs are spill-proof cooling packs that are used for medical treatment the issues like sour tendons and joints.


Gel packs on a plane within a carry-on Can be taken as sole packs for medicinal purposes. For the checked baggage, gel packs are allowed in a reasonable amount.

Final words

As for my final Verdict about whether can you bring ice packs on a plane, it’s a confident yes. For medicinal purposes, the TSA has completely exempted ice packs from the liquid rule. So you can keep your life-saving medicine safe through travel. Whereas for food storage reasons, you can have the ice packs in checked baggage irrespective of the solid state and the number. However, the carry-on ice packs must be limited to a considerable number only and must follow the rules above.

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