NewsLocal News


TSA explains what is or isn't allowed with you when you travel through Sky Harbor

Travel officials getting reminders out ahead of holidays
Sky Harbor TSA prohibited items.png
Posted at 1:51 PM, Dec 21, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-21 15:51:45-05

PHOENIX — Knives, snow globes, and meat tenderizers all have the same thing in common... they're banned from carry-on luggage on airplanes.

Ahead of what is expected to be the busiest Christmas travel season Sky Harbor has ever seen, make sure to educate yourself on what you're allowed to pack or not before you travel.

Around Thanksgiving, Patricia Mancha with TSA showed ABC15 dozens of various items, ranging from liquor, sunscreen, and non-perishable foods to lava lamps and snow globes.

All these items were found in carry-on luggage from various travelers at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

If it’s sharp and pointy, it may be banned.

“We see a lot of these, the Kuboton. It can poke your eye out,” Mancha said.

The Kuboton key chain, which is described as a self-defense key chain, could be used as a weapon. Many other things like a rolling pin could be used as a weapon and are often seen at Sky Harbor. These items were laid out as an annual reminder to put them in your checked luggage or leave it at home.

Dozens of prohibited items confiscated by TSA at Phoenix Sky Harbor

Patricia says all the items shown in the video above were “voluntarily abandoned” by travelers. Typically, they’re put in a bin and later sold by TSA.

The spare change that ends up in their bins goes to their general fund.

Mancha tells ABC15 that last year, they collected a good chunk of change...

”Almost a million dollars worth of pennies that people have left behind,” she said.

The most common prohibited item that makes it into the TSA line is the everyday water bottle.

Mancha has a good way to remember that nothing over 3.4 ounces of fluid is allowed through security.

“If you can spill it, spread it, pour it, or pump it, it’s limited to 3.4 oz,” said Mancha.

For more on what is or isn't allowed when flying, click here.

On an average day, there are about 130,000 people who come through Sky Harbor. Last year, there were 196 firearm discoveries in carry-on luggage over the course of the year.

That puts us in the top five for firearm discoveries across the U.S.

Guns need to be in a locked, hard case in checked luggage and declared with the airline. If not, police are called, and you can face a $15,000 fine.

”It’s not a fast process, so people often lose their flight,” said Mancha.

Sky Harbor aims to alleviate holiday travel frustration by suggesting waiting at the 24th Street or 44th Street Sky Train. Arrive two hours early for domestic flights, three hours early for international flights, and book holiday parking now.