Air Travel with Essential Oils & Herbs

Air travel with essential oils is easy as long as you follow the rules for liquids. There’s no need to leave your herbs or essential oils at home just because you’re traveling by airplane.

Here’s how to make sure your natural wellness routine stays in tact while traveling.

How to pack essential oils for air travel

How to Get Through Airport Security with Essential Oils

Since they’re liquids, essential oils are subject to the Transportation Safety Administration regulations for liquids. They have to be placed in a 1 quart plastic bag and they must be carried outside your carry-on luggage.

Passengers are allowed 3.4 ounces of liquid in carry-on luggage. That’s about 100 ml. Most essential oils come in 5 or 15 ml bottles, so take a look at the bottles of your oils, herbal preparations (if they’re liquids like tinctures or flower essences), and other liquids you want to take with you, and figure out how much you can take in your carry-on.

  • 30 ml = 1 ounce
  • 90 ml = 3 ounces
  • Six 15 ml bottles = 90 ml = 3 ounces
  • Eighteen 5 ml bottles = 90 ml = 3 ounces 

You might need to pour some of your essential oils or herbal preparations into the smaller glass bottles (the 5/8 dram size) to take with you and leave the original container at home.

Whatever you do, don’t think you can slip your oils or tinctures through in your purse or carry-on. It will show up on the x-ray and you’ll be subjected to search and there’s a chance they will be confiscated.

If you are taking oils or herbal preparations with you, make sure they are clearly labeled. 

X-ray will lower the frequency of some oils but the frequency will return over time.

If you pack your essential oils or herbal preparations in your checked luggage instead of your carry-on luggage, put the bottles in a securely closed plastic bag with a paper towel or small wash cloth to absorb any potential leaks. While your essential oils smell wonderful individually, you don’t want your clothes to smell like a concoction of all your oils and tinctures mixed together for the duration of your trip!

Don’t apply or spray essential oils on the plane

There are a couple of common courtesy rules when it comes to air travel with essential oils. If you’re going to use essential oils before your flight, put them on your feet rather than over your heart, on your neck, or your wrists. Your fellow passengers will be less likely to smell them and you won’t trigger any allergies in those around you.

And as much as you might like to disinfect your tray table, and as helpful as an essential oil based sanitizing spray will be for your hotel room, please don’t spray it on the plane. Essential oils are extremely potent and can cause allergic reactions or a burning sensation in the eyes and nose of a sensitive person. A plant-based hand sanitizer like CleanWell or Thieves Waterless Hand Purifier is less pervasive and will still keep the germs at bay.

The Best Herbal Tinctures & Essential Oils for Travel

While you’re bringing your wellness routine along for the trip, there are some major benefits to traveling with essential oils. They can really help with headaches, digestive issues, jet lag, and keeping your immune system strong.

Some of the best essential oils and herbal tinctures for travel are:

Rescue Remedy natural stress relief tincture
PanAway blend to ease minor aches and pains
Lemon essential oil to kill germs and make local water taste better
Purification blend as insect repellent and to clean the air in your hotel room and get rid of any musty smells
Peppermint for headaches or stomach upset
Lavender because it can be used for just about anything and it’s so soothing
Echinacea tincture to give your immune system a boost if you start to feel a bug coming on

Take these essential oils and herbal preparations or any others you use every day with you on your travels and you won’t disrupt your usual routine.

Happy (and healthy) travels!

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