We look at some of the weirdest and most bizarre items found in hand carry luggage from around the world.
As a well versed business traveller, you will know what’s acceptable in hand carry bags for your next flight and what’s not. You’ll know the subtle difference between airport screening processes, where you need to take off your belt, and where you need to put liquids into plastic bags. However, there are many who travel less frequently and might not understand what’s done and what isn’t when it comes to hand carry items.
The team at MoneyTransfers.com recently scoured the murky depths of multiple threads on Reddit to find 11 of the most weird and downright bizarre items found in hand luggage by airport staff around the world and offer a few travel tips from expert Jonathan Merry to make your next business trip a little less painful.
1. Adult Toys
Airport security staff have reported an unusual trend of finding adult toys discreetly tucked away in passengers’ carry-on bags. These buzzy items often raise eyebrows and prompt extra attention during screenings. But what’s more astonishing is that at least two instances have been reported where these adult toys were found filled with Class A drugs! A peculiar choice for drug concealment, to say the least.
2. Live Fireworks
One traveller recounted their nail-biting experience when they forgot to remove live fireworks from their pockets before flying from a small domestic airport to a larger international one. The unexpected explosive discovery caused quite a commotion, leaving the passenger covered in “gunshot residue” as they cautiously waited for security personnel.
3. A Live Crocodile!
In a case that sounds like something out of a wildlife adventure, a passenger on a flight from Australia managed to carry a live caiman on a commercial flight. Now that would have been a shock for the airport staff, although we question this one as there are no caimans Downunder, just salt water crocodiles!
4. A bomb
In another case, a military serviceman returned from the Middle East to the US and attempted to bring a live claymore (an explosive device!) with him. Apparently, he pleaded innocent and that he “didn’t know he wasn’t supposed to do that”! According to the redditor, the FBI took the unsuspecting passenger away for questioning.
5. Snake wine
A passenger raised eyebrows when they attempted to carry a bottle of snake wine, a delicacy of Vietnam often found with a whole snake submerged in the spirit, in their hand luggage. In an effort to prove that it was indeed wine, the daring individual even volunteered to take a sip. Cheers to their bravery!
6. Ears Of Fresh Corn And Half Frozen Bratwurst
One memorable airport security screening involved a suitcase filled with ears of fresh corn and half-frozen bratwurst. Apparently, someone had big plans for a family picnic in the southern lands – just don’t try taking either to New Zealand or Australia, which has very strict rules on food in luggage.
7. A Duffle Bag Full Of $1
A former college student, travelling for work, experienced a heart-stopping moment when airport staff discovered a duffle bag stuffed with $1 bills. Although it raised suspicions initially, the seasoned airport manager quickly recognized the innocence of the situation, saving the day from turning into a real-life crime drama.
8. A Ziplock Bag Of Sand (Looked Like A Bomb)
A child’s innocent souvenir from a beach vacation turned into a bizarre airport incident when a Ziplock bag filled with sand raised suspicions on the X-ray scanner. The concoction of rotten seaweed and tiny sea creatures within the sand only added to the peculiar scene.
9. A Human Skull
In an incident that seemed straight out of a thriller movie, a passenger, who happened to be a medical professional, was found transporting a genuine human skull.
10. Matcha Powder
One traveller’s love for matcha powder took an unexpected turn when they decided to pack a massive suitcase solely filled with loose matcha powder, sans containers.
11. A Morning Star
In an odd yet heartfelt gesture, a man tried to bring a genuine, full-size morning star (a mediaeval weapon with a spiked metal ball) onto a plane, claiming it had “sentimental value.” Needless to say, this isn’t something you are allowed to take on a flight!
Tips For Breezing Through Airport Security
- Pack Smart: Before packing, familiarise yourself with the airline’s guidelines on prohibited items. Leave any questionable or restricted items out of your carry-on bags.
- Don’t bother with Ziploc bags: Airport security only allows you to use their own Ziploc bags (which you can grab just before you go through security), so don’t bother portioning out your liquids ahead of time. Just ensure they’re in an easily accessible place in your hand luggage.
- Double-Check Your Luggage: Always double-check your luggage before leaving for the airport – and of course, never carry something onboard for someone else.
- Use Secure Containers: If you must carry unusual items, such as liquids or powders, ensure they are securely packed in appropriate containers. You can only take liquids under 100ml in your carry-on so put any over this amount in your checked luggage.
- Organise Your Luggage: Keeping your luggage well-organised can speed up the screening process. Opt for clear compartments for liquids and toiletries, and ensure you know what items (such as laptops and batteries) need to be removed from your hand luggage to go through security more efficiently.
- Arrive Early: Give yourself ample time at the airport to navigate security procedures comfortably. Arriving early also allows you to address any issues or questions that may arise during the screening process
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