Whether you can bring a dab pen on a plane depends on what the dab pen contains.

As we all know, dab pens are used to release vaporized marijuana, which is illegal on a federal level.

Airports fall under federal jurisdiction.

So, this means that it is not legal to bring your dab pen on a plane if it contains any illegal substances, even though weed might be legal in the state you are flying out of or flying into.

Can You Bring a Dab Pen on a Plane?

For sake of argument, let’s say that the dab pen you want to bring on a plane is empty.

Regulations differ depending on if you want to bring the dab pen in your carry on or checked bags.

Carry on Bags

The TSA state that electronic smoking devices, including electronic cigarettes, vaping devices, puff bars, and vape pens, are only allowed in your carry on bags.

The TSA also state that you “are required to take effective measures for preventing accidental activation of the heating element of the device when transporting the device.”

Additionally, “each lithium-ion battery must not exceed a Watt-hour (Wh) rating of 100 Wh; or for lithium metal batteries, a lithium content of 2 grams”.

Considering that dab pens are small devices with small battery packs, dab pens are fine to bring in your carry on.

If the dab pen contains metal, then it is very likely that it will set off the metal detector if you leave it on you and go through airport security.

Checked Bags

As mentioned, dab pens and other electronic smoking devices are not allowed to be packed in your checked bags.

This is because they can be a fire hazard and put the safety of passengers and cabin crew on the flight in danger.

Be Careful on International Flights

Generally, the same rules apply when flying with electronic smoking devices and vape pens in other countries.

You won’t be able to pack the device in your checked bags, but will be able to pack it in your carry on.

Remember that the USA is one of the very few countries (at least in part depending on the state) where marijuana is legal.

If you’re found trying to bring weed on a plane and into a country where weed is illegal, the consequences could be much more severe than in the USA.

How to Pack a Dab Pen for Flying

To ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible on your next flight:

  • Make sure that the dab pen is empty and doesn’t contain any illegal substances.
  • Separate the battery from the cartridge.
  • Pack batteries separately in a secured bag.
  • Remove any packaging or labels that could indicate that the dab pen is a THC or cannabis product

Dogs Can Smell Dab Pens

Dogs have a very keen sense of smell.

So, if there is a dog at the airport that is utilized by the TSA, they will have no problem sniffing out the marijuana concentrate inside the dab pen.

What Happens if the TSA Find Weed

It may surprise you to learn that TSA officers are not looking for weed.

There are far more serious threats that are of much more concern to ensure the safety of passengers.

The TSA on their website even state:

“TSA security officers do not search for marijuana or other illegal drugs, but if any illegal substance is discovered during security screening, TSA will refer the matter to a law enforcement officer.”

So, this means that even if TSA agents are not actively looking for weed on passengers, if found, they have a duty to report the matter to law enforcement.

Can You Take a Wax Pen on a Plane?

There is no difference between a wax pen and dab pen.

It’s simply a matter of using different terminology to refer to the same device

So, again, this means that you can only bring an empty wax/dab pen on a plane in your carry on bags and not your checked bags.

Ella Dunham, a Freelance Travel Journalist and Marketing Manager, boasts an impressive career spanning eight years in the travel and tourism sectors.

Honored as one of "30 Under 30" by TTG Media (the world’s very first weekly travel trade newspaper), a "Tour Operator Travel Guru" and "Legend Award" winner, Ella is also a Fellow of the Institute of Travel, a Member of the Association of Women Travel Executives, has completed over 250 travel modules, and hosts travel-focused segments on national radio shows where she provides insights on travel regulations and destinations.

Ella has visited over 40 countries (with 10 more planned this year).