With summer now upon us, many will be flying out to holiday destinations in the next couple of months, and it may be useful to know what items are banned for checked luggage.

This is luggage which is carried in the hold of the plane when it flies out to your destination, rather than you having it in the cabin.

There are certain items which you can store in hold luggage that you can't in hand luggage, but at the same time, there are also items that are banned from both.

Whilst it is very unlikely travellers will be putting these items into their suitcases when they are heading out on holiday, it may still be wise to be aware of them.

What items are banned for hold luggage?

According to the Heathrow Airport website, the following items cannot be taken on to an aircraft in either hold or hand luggage:

  • Flammable liquids and solids
  • Oxidisers such as bleaching powders
  • Organic peroxides
  • Tear gas devices or any gas cylinders
  • Infectious substances such as live virus materials
  • Wet-cell car batteries
  • Magnetrons. Instruments containing mercury
  • Instruments containing magnets
  • Fireworks and pyrotechnics
  • Non-safety matches

  • Fire lighter, lighter fuel, paints, thinners
  • Poisons, arsenic, cyanide, weedkiller
  • Radioactive materials, acids, corrosives, alkalis, caustic soda
  • Creosote, quicklime, oiled paper
  • Vehicle fuel system components which have contained fuel
  • Explosives, ammunition, detonators and related equipment
  • Smoke canisters and smoke cartridges

This list is standard across major airports in the UK, with toy/replica guns (metal or plastic) also not permitted.

Can you put liquids in hold luggage?

There are several items that you are allowed to carry in hold luggage that you are not allowed to carry on-board with you in your hand luggage, which includes liquids.

On Gatwick Airport's website, they list these items as:

  • Liquids, creams, gels and pastes in containers over 100ml
  • Sharp items including scissors  
  • Razor blades (razors that have the blade set into a plastic moulding are allowed in hand baggage, but other types are not)
  • Knives with blades of any length
  • Hypodermic needles (unless required for medical reasons, for which proof will be required)

Recommended reading:

  • Tools (including multi-tools and penknives)
  • Catapults
  • Walking/hiking poles
  • Sporting bats
  • Darts
  • Billiard, snooker or pool cues

They add: "You should also bear in mind the weight of your bags and check weight allowances on your ticket or with your airline."