With many items, it’s clear if you can bring them on a plane or not.

But many passengers are confused whether they can bring knitting needles onboard or not.

Thankfully, according to TSA guidelines, knitting needles are allowed in both your carry on bags and checked bags.

But is there anything else you should be aware of, including what other sewing supplies or crafts you can bring on a plane, if you can bring knitting needles with you when flying internationally, and if you are allowed to knit on a plane too?

Carry On Bags vs. Checked Bags

The TSA state that knitting needles are allowed to be packed in both your carry on and checked bags.

One thing to note is that the TSA state that if you are planning on packing the knitting needles in your checked bags, they should be “sheathed or securely wrapped to prevent injury to baggage handlers and inspectors”.

However, needlepoint tools and other cutters that contain blades must be placed in your checked baggage. This includes circular thread cutters and scissors larger than 4 inches.

Domestic vs. International Flights

Europe

While you can pack knitting needles in both your carry on and checked bags when flying from and within the U.S., you need to be careful when flying in Europe.

A number of major European airlines, including Lufthansa, Air France, KLM, and Iberia either outright ban passengers from bringing knitting needles on a plane in their carry on bags, or say that it is for the security officer to decide as you pass through airport security.

It would be best to directly check with the airline if you want to bring knitting needles on a plane in your carry on bags.

It would be a good idea to leave the metal needles at home if you want to increase the likelihood of being able to bring knitting needles onboard the aircraft.

Canada

Popular Canadian airlines like Air Canada and WestJet state that it is fine to pack knitting needles in either your carry on or checked bags.

UK

If you’re planning to fly to or from the UK, the good news is that you can bring knitting needles in both your carry on and checked bags.

Type of Knitting Needle

There are five basic types of knitting needles, including:

  • Straight needles
  • Circular needles
  • Interchangeable needles
  • Double-pointed needles
  • Cable needles

All of these types of knitting needles are allowed in both your carry on and checked bags, but keep in mind that if the needle is made out of metal, it may bring added attention to security officers, and you may be questioned.

What Other Sewing Supplies or Crafts Can You Bring On a Plane?

  • Sewing Machines: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
  • Crochet Hooks: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
  • Sewing Needles: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
  • Scissors: Yes, but only if under 4″ from the pivot point
  • Sewing Needles: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
  • Nail Clippers: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
  • Tweezers: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
  • Spray Starch: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
  • Staplers: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
  • Tape Measures: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags
  • Rotary Cutters: Yes, in your checked bags but not your carry on
  • Safety Pins: Yes, in both your carry on and checked bags

How to Pack Knitting Needles for Flying

Carry on Bags

If you want to bring knitting needles on a plane in your carry on bags, you should:

  • Pack bamboo or plastic knitting needles instead of metal ones
  • Only pack the needles you will need for the flight. Pack the others in your checked bags
  • Select shorter knitting needles
  • Wrap the needles in a knitting tool bag

Checked Bags

If packing knitting needles in your checked bags, they should be securely wrapped to prevent injury to baggage handlers and inspectors.

Can You Knit, Sew or Crochet on a Plane?

If you can’t wait to get to your destination to work on your next piece, or you have a long-haul flight ahead, you’ll be pleased to know that you can sew, knit and crochet on a plane.

There are no restrictions on taking the sewing supplies or crafts out of your carry-on bags and using them to start sewing, knitting or crocheting.

Just keep in mind that you shouldn’t knit during takeoff, landing or during strong turbulence due to the increased likelihood of an accident occurring.

Note that this only applies to U.S. and Canadian airlines, so it would be best to ask the airline before your flight or flight attendant while onboard if you’re not flying with a U.S. or Canadian airline.