If you’re considering travelling soon, then you need to consider the items that you’re packing into your luggage. You want to ensure that you won’t take anything that is likely to get confiscated. You might need to take a laser pointer for stars with you, whether it’s for a presentation or something else. But can you take a laser pointer on a plane?
Can you take a laser pointer on a plane?
Well, the good news is that the answer yes, you can take a laser pointer on a plane. There are no current regulations stating that you cannot do this, however if you’re worried then make sure it’s in your checked luggage.
There’s nothing illegal or wrong about taking a laser pointer on a plane. Many people think that there would be issue with this, seeing as how there has been a lot of controversy around laser pointers being directed at aircrafts. This doesn’t mean to say that the product itself is illegal or inherently wrong however – it’s just the people controlling the device that have the issue!
Can you take a laser pointer on a plane? Well, it depends on the laser pointer. Are you taking them from some foreign country? Are they more than 5mw? Are they green, red or blue? Are they made for use with a night observation device? Are there batteries inside of it?
How many people are taking them and how are you going to use one on an airplane or at all? Do you work for a law enforcement agency or government agency that has authorization to take one onto the plane (i.e., not just regular Joe Schmo)? Are you transporting explosives or materials that could be set off by light, such as nitroglycerine, Dynamite or TATP (Tri-acetone Triperoxide)?
So I’m safe in the US.. what about other countries?
If you’re in the United States, then you don’t need to worry about taking your laser pointer on a plane. But what about in other countries?
Well, it’s evident that some other countries are taking a far more strict approach when it comes to laser pointers. The United Kingdom, Europe and Australia have cracked down on high powered laser pointers and reduced the maximum power to 1 mW. You can still take pack this kind of laser pointer in your luggage, but beware that if you take a higher power laser then you might end up getting it confiscated.
Why is this such an issue?
The main issue comes from the effect that pointer a laser at an aircraft actually has on the pilot. What may seem like a bit of fun to children actually can have a disastrous consequence, so it’s important that you supervise them and educate them on the dangers of using a laser pen incorrectly.
Many planes use Plexiglass windows. This means that when you shine a light on them, they amplify the light by a great deal, which can cause the pilot to be visually impaired. It’s important to be safe whilst you’re using a laser pointer and ensure that you’re respecting those around you.
If you want to check some other items that you definitely can’t take onto a flight, then have a look at the TSA website and check if you’re allowed to travel with your item. If you’re in your respective county, then you can easily check your own countries prohibited items list too.