Are you a chocolate lover and planning to take a flight soon? If yes, you might be wondering if you can bring your favorite sweet treat with you on board.
In this article, we will explore how to take chocolate through security, whether to check them or bring them in handbags, the proper procedure at US customs when bringing chocolates from another country, and much more.
The Quick Answer: Can you bring chocolate on a plane? You can bring chocolate or any other solid food item on a plane, but you will run into trouble if it is in what the TSA considers to be liquid form.
Can You Take Chocolate Through Airport Security?
Bringing your own snacks on a flight can be a money saver because the same items cost a lot more at the airport. And this way, you can buy your favorite kinds of snacks because there is not a wide selection available on board. Chocolate is no exception.
But can you bring chocolate through TSA security?
You can carry an unlimited amount of solid chocolate through airport security, as long as the weight of your carry-on does not exceed the limit. But, if the chocolate can be spread or poured, it will be considered a liquid or gel.
In this case, you have to follow the 3:1:1 liquids rule.
For example, bringing a jar of Nutella or Hershey’s chocolate spread will fall under the liquid category. According to the Transportation Security Authority, you can only carry liquids less than 3.4 ounces per container in carry-on bags.
You should pack all liquid, gel, or aerosol items in a single quart-size ziplock bag. If the jar you bought is more than 3.4 ounces (100 ml), it should be packed in checked bags.
Some additional tips when you take chocolate through airport security:
- Keep your carry-on bag organized and as uncluttered as possible to make the screening process easier and faster.
- Keep any items that might require additional screening, such as food, powders, and electronics, separate, so they don’t obstruct the X-ray images.
- Always be polite and respectful with the TSA officer because the final decision rests with them.
Can You Pack Chocolate In Checked Bags?
There is no limit to the amount of chocolate you can pack in checked bags, including liquids. If the chocolates you are carrying have a cream filling, they will be considered liquid or gel and should be packed in checked baggage.
The only problem with packing chocolates in checked bags is that there is a risk of them melting, which is why it is recommended to keep them in handbags as the temperature of the passenger deck is cooler.
The temperature at airports is relatively cold, and the cargo hold in planes is a pressurized and climate-controlled cabin, so the chance of chocolates melting is low.
But there is a chance your chocolates will melt if it is a long journey or the destination you are traveling to has a hotter climate. Chocolates can be affected if checked bags are left in the sun or on the hot tarmac for too long during transit.
If you have no choice but to keep chocolate in checked bags, here are some tips on how you can keep it from melting on long journeys:
- If possible, wrap the chocolates in plastic and keep them in an airtight container. This way, even if they melt, they will not spoil the other items.
- Pack the chocolates in a ziplock bag with ice packs and seal it completely.
- You can insulate the chocolates by layering other items around them. They also act as padding and protect delicate items from bumps during transit.
Can I Bring Chocolate on an International Flight?
Many people bring back chocolates, candies, and other delicacies as souvenirs for their friends and family from their international travels. Exploring new kinds of chocolates in different places is a treat for people who love chocolate.
Although like the USA, many other countries allow solid items like chocolate bars to be packed in carry-on and checked luggage, you should check the law on restricted items in the country you are traveling to.
For example, countries like Australia and New Zealand have strict rules on which food items are allowed in the country, which is why you should research the rules of local customs before your journey.
Even if you are permitted to take chocolate into the country you will probably still have to declare it on the customs form you will be given to fill out. If you fail to mention that you have it then it could be confiscated and you may receive a fine.
Do You Need To Declare Chocolate At US Customs?
Before your flight lands, you will be handed a customs declaration form by the cabin crew, in which you have to specify all the items you bought on your trip and are bringing back into the country. This is necessary to clear the immigration process.
You can also print these forms from the kiosks at the airport after landing.
You have to declare chocolates as food. You will be asked what you are carrying and how much you paid for them, including taxes, so it would be better to save their receipts.
If you are found in possession of items you failed to declare, you may have to pay a hefty fine. This is why you should declare all new items you buy because there is no penalty for declaring something that doesn’t need to be.
Can You Eat Chocolate While On Board?
Many airlines distribute free bags of peanuts on flights. Similarly, some airlines give away free chocolates. But this is a rare occurrence and might not be extended to the people in the economy section.
So, it is better to bring chocolates with you on board and eat them when you want snacks without spending more!
If you are traveling to an unfamiliar location and are unsure whether you can bring chocolates or other delicacies into that country, finishing them on the plane would be best.
Does chocolate melt on a plane?
Cholocate could melt on a plane, just as it can anywhere else if it is exposed to warm temperatures. However, in normal circumstances, it should survive without melting.
If you are carrying chocolate in your checked bags and perhaps traveling to a warm part of the US or another country it may happen. If the baggage gets delayed either before loading or after being unloaded and sits on the apron in direct sunlight then the chocolate melting is a distinct possibility.
How to carry chocolates in flight without melting
If you are taking some special chocolate with you as a present you can take some steps to ensure it doesn’t melt. The most extreme method would be to place it inside some form of cool bag/box with some frozen ice packs. Other than that the best you can do is to try and insulate it as best as possible between clothes.
Does TSA check chocolate?
If you are taking solid chocolate (chocolate bars or a box of chocolates) in your carry on then apart from them passing through the x-ray screening they will not normally be checked further. If you are carrying spreadable chocolate then this will be checked as it must be in a container no larger than 3.4 ounces and be in your liquids bag with other liquids.
Can I bring open chocolate on a plane?
There are no restrictions on taking open chocolate bars or an open box of chocolates etc on a plane.
Is chocolate allowed in cabin bags?
Chocolate is allowed in carry on bags without restriction if it is solid chocolate. If it is spreadable chocolate then it must be in a container no larger than 3.4 ounces and be in your liquids bag with other liquids.
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