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Can You Bring an Empty Water Bottle Through TSA?

  • Things To Know
  • Renee Martin
  • 5 minutes

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The TSA has rules about what passengers can bring on their bodies and in their carry-on bags when they fly. These rules also apply to water bottles, so you might want to know whether you can bring an empty one through security without breaking any rules.

In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about bringing an empty water bottle through TSA, including what kinds of bottles are allowed, if any, how to prep for travel, and some frequently asked questions.

Why would you want to carry an empty water bottle while flying?

You might want to carry an empty bottle with you if you want to reduce waste and save some money. One of the best ways to reduce plastic waste is by carrying a glass or stainless steel bottle while traveling.

So can I bring an empty water bottle through TSA?

Yes, you can! But, as with everything related to air travel, there are some things you must keep in mind. We will cover that in more detail.

What you need to know is that the rules are in place to make sure that everyone on board is safe and that anything the TSA thinks could be dangerous is strictly not allowed. Before you try to bring a water bottle on board, you should find out what the rules are for your specific airline.

Does the size of the bottle matter?

Yes, size does matter in this case! Yes, the size of a water bottle does matter when it comes to what can go through security. Most airlines let people bring an empty water bottle with a capacity of up to 20 oz. or a container that is 34 oz. or smaller. Containers bigger than this may not be allowed through TSA. Before trying to bring a bigger container through TSA, always check with your airline to make sure what their rules are.

Types of bottles allowed by the TSA

TSA has several regulations in place to guarantee that empty water bottles are safe to bring on board. The following types of bottles are allowed:

  • Plastic water bottles: These are totally fine to bring as long as they’re made of a lightweight and durable material like polyethylene terephthalate (try saying that three times fast!). So, go ahead and bring that trusty bottle with you!
  • Metal water bottles: They’re allowed too, but you’ll need to make sure they’re empty and completely dry before passing through security. No sneakily sipping on water while you wait in line, sorry!
  • Collapsible water bottles: These are a fantastic option for travel since they take up minimal space when not in use. Just remember to empty them out before heading through security.
  • Hydration packs: For all outdoor enthusiasts, hydration packs are convenient, and more importantly, they’re allowed as long as they’re empty and dry, so make sure to pack accordingly.

Prepping your bottle before you fly

Once you’ve determined the best water bottle for your trip, it’s time to get it ready for the road. Some things to keep in mind are listed below.

  • Make sure your water bottle is empty before you leave for the airport. Allowing it to air dry entails emptying away any remaining liquid.
  • If your water bottle comes with extras like a filter or straw, you’ll need to take them off in order to get through security. To prevent leakage, they should be stored in a clear plastic bag together with other liquids.
  • You should have your water bottle handy in case TSA agents want to take a look at it. Put it in a separate bag or the outside pocket of your carry-on.

Is drinking water available after security?

Most airports provide drinking water to passengers once they pass through security. However, certain liquids are not permitted at security checkpoints and must be disposed of or returned to the traveler’s car before advancing. If you intend to bring an empty water bottle or other beverage containers, ensure sure it does not exceed 3.4 ounces before attempting to pass through TSA.

Frequently Asked Questions

We’ve collected some of the most common questions people have about bringing an empty water bottle through TSA:

Can I bring a full water bottle through TSA?

No, you cannot bring a full water bottle through TSA. All liquids must be in containers that hold 3.4 ounces (100 milliliters) or less.

Can I bring a reusable water bottle through TSA?

Yes, you can bring a reusable water bottle through TSA as long as it’s empty and free of any liquid.

Do I need to put my empty water bottle in a plastic bag?

No, you do not need to put your empty water bottle in a plastic bag. Only liquids, gels, and aerosols that are 3.4 ounces or less need to be placed in a clear plastic bag.

Can I bring a water bottle with a built-in filter through TSA?

Yes, you can bring a water bottle with a built-in filter through TSA as long as it’s empty and the filter is removed.


You can go through TSA with an empty water bottle as long as you follow the rules set by the agency. You can stay hydrated on your flight without buying expensive water bottles at the airport if you choose the right type of bottle, prepare it well, and keep it handy.

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