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Prohibited items

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For safety and security reasons, dangerous goods such as those listed below, must not be carried in passenger's baggage (checked or unchecked):

  • attaché briefcases with installed alarm devices; or incorporate lithium batteries and/or pyrotechnic material;
  • explosives, munitions, fireworks, toy fireworks and flares;
  • compressed gases (flammable, non-flammable or poisonous) such as butane, propane, aqualung cylinders, lighter fuels or refills, aerosols, chemical irritant aerosols;
  • electric stunning device;
  • flammable liquids such as paints, thinner, adhesives;
  • flammable solids such as "strike anywhere matches", charcoal, phosphorus and articles which are easily ignited;
  • oxidizing substances such as bleaching powder and peroxides;
  • toxic substances, poisons such as arsenic, cyanides, insecticides, weedkillers;
  • infectious substances such as biological products;
  • radioactive materials;
  • corrosive materials such as mercury (which may be contained in thermometers or blood pressure gauges), acids, alkalis and wet cell batteries;
  • any other substances which, during a flight, present a danger not covered above, such as magnetized, offensive or irritating materials.

Medicines and toiletries in limited quantities which are necessary for your journey, such as hair sprays, perfumes and medicines containing alcohol, may be carried on board. Further information is available on request.

Inflated objects

Inflated objects, including inflated balls for sporting purposes such as basketballs, are restricted to be carried on board unless those objects have been fully deflated before boarding.

Please contact our reservations office for further information. Harpoons and spear guns are classified as arms. Examples of a restricted article would include:

  • Lighters and Matches
    With the exception of China, Bangladesh, India and the US, a passenger can carry one small packet of safety matches or a cigarette lighter on one’s person, which is intended for use by the individual only.

    China, Bangladesh, and India
    Passengers travelling from these three countries are not allowed to carry any lighters and matches onboard or in any baggage (checked or unchecked).

    United States
    Passengers travelling to/from the USA are not allowed to carry any torch lighters onboard or in any baggage (checked or unchecked).

    Note: No lighter fuel or lighter refills can be permitted on the person or in the checked/unchecked baggage.

    Please refer to the TSA website for more information.
  • knives (including hunting knives, swords), scissors and any other sharp objects (eg ice-pick, ski poles, hiking poles) considered illegal by local law and;
  • Firearms/Ammunition, including pistols, signal pistols, rifles, shotguns, air rile/guns, sterling guns, c.s. pistols, Remington, humane killers, bolt guns, flare pistols, toy rifles/pistols, toy air rifles/pistols, toy pistol caps and starting pistols, ammunition, replica or imitation firearms, crossbows.

    The importation into Hong Kong of arms and ammunition is governed by laws, which require import licences or permits to be issued in advance by the authorities concerned.

  • Explosive material, including military, commercial or home-made explosive, explosive devices, detonators, smoke cartridges, bullet bombs, grenades, missiles, magazines (gun part) mines and other explosive military ordinance, replica or imitation explosive material or devices.
  • Pointed or bladed items made or adapted to cause injury, flick knives (or any knife operated in the same manner, mechanically or electrically), gravity catch knives, stilettos, daggers, kukris, Chinese/Japanese style throwing dart, Gurkha knives (butterfly knives), other knives both real or ceremonial with blades of any length or description, including sheath knives, kirpans and skeandhus, open razors, scalpels, ice picks, swords, sword sticks, ski poles, hiking poles, umbrellas containing sword blades or arrows, any bladed or pointed weapon designed to be used in a fashion whereby the handle is held in a clenched fist and the blade or point protrudes between the fingers or fists (e.g. knuckle duster).
  • Items containing incapacitating substances, including tear gas, mace and phosphorous acids.

  • Highly inflammable substances (e.g. petrol, lighter fuel, etc.)

  • Gas containers and aerosols with a capacity of more than 500 millilitres.

  • Knuckle-dusters (with or without blade, spiked or not spiked), clubs, coshes, rice flails, including, truncheon (spring operated baton), two-section staffs, Mace (baton), hand/thumb-cuffs, gravity-operated batons, Chinese style fighting iron, spring loaded steel batons,

Please click here for Security Checks Requirement.

For passengers travelling to, from or transiting in Hong Kong, please refer to CAD website & HK Police website for more information.

For latest update and further information, you can visit The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) website and Heathrow Airport (BAA) website.

Passengers are not permitted to carry the following articles into security restricted areas and on board the cabin of an aircraft. Articles prohibited in passenger’s hold baggage are additionally marked with an asterisk (*).

(a) Guns, firearms and other devices that discharge projectiles — Devices capable, or appearing capable, of being used to cause serious injury by discharging a projectile,


  • firearms of all types, such as pistols, revolvers, rifles, shotguns,
  • toy guns, replicas and imitation firearms capable of being mistaken for real weapons,
  • component parts of firearms, excluding telescopic sights,
  • compressed air and CO2 guns, such as pistols, pellet guns, rifles and ball bearing guns,
  • signal flare pistols and starter pistols,
  • bows, cross bows and arrows,
  • harpoon guns and spear guns,
  • slingshots and catapults;

(b) Stunning devices — Devices designed specifically to stun or immobilise,


  • devices for shocking, such as stun guns, tasers and stun batons,
  • animal stunners and animal killers,
  • disabling and incapacitating chemicals, gases and sprays, such as mace, pepper sprays, capsicum sprays, tear gas, acid sprays and animal
    repellent sprays;

(c) Objects with a sharp point or sharp edge — Objects with a sharp point or sharp edge capable of being used to cause serious injury,


  • items designed for chopping, such as axes, hatchets and cleavers,
  • ice axes and ice picks,
  • razor blades,
  • box cutters,
  • knives with blades of more than 6 cm*
  • scissors with blades of more than 6 cm as measured from the fulcrum,
  • martial arts equipment with a sharp point or sharp edge,
  • swords and sabres;

* carrying certain knives without a reasonable excuse may be a criminal offence. If you encounter a knife such as a butterfly, flick or lock knife of any length police assistance should be sought in line with local procedures

(d) Workmen’s tools — Tools capable of being used either to cause serious injury or to threaten the safety of aircraft,


  • crowbars,
  • drills and drill bits, including cordless portable power drills,
  • tools with a blade or a shaft of more than 6 cm capable of use as a
  • weapon, such as screwdrivers and chisels,
  • saws, including cordless portable power saws,
  • blowtorches,
  • bolt guns and nail guns;

(e) Blunt instruments — Objects capable of being used to cause serious injury when used to hit,


  • baseball and softball bats,
  • clubs and batons, such as billy clubs, blackjacks and night sticks,
  • martial arts equipment;

(f) Explosives and incendiary substances and devices — Explosives and incendiary substances and devices capable, or appearing capable, of being used to cause serious injury or to pose a threat to the safety of aircraft,


  • ammunition,*
  • blasting caps,*
  • detonators and fuses,*
  • replica or imitation explosive devices,
  • mines, grenades and other explosive military stores,*
  • fireworks and other pyrotechnics*
  • smoke-generating canisters and smoke-generating cartridges,*
  • dynamite, gunpowder and plastic explosives.*

* These articles are additionally prohibited from carriage in passenger’s hold baggage.

Examples of dangerous goods prohibited in cabin baggage on safety grounds


  • Flammable or harmful gases (such as camping gas, glazing torches)
  • Flammable liquids (lighter fluid, petrol, diesel)
  • Flammable solids (such as non-safety matches, disposable BBQ, coal,
  • firelighters)
  • Oxidisers (e.g. bleach)
  • Poisons (e.g. pesticides, weed killer)
  • Corrosives (car or other wet batteries, mercury)
  • Biological or Chemical hazardous materials

The CAA Dangerous Goods Office have produced a guide entitled “What Can I Carry?” containing guidance and further details on the most encountered dangerous and prohibited items.

Products of animal origin may carry pathogens that can cause infectious diseases in animals. Passengers* are not allowed to bring any consignment of meat / meat products, or milk / milk products into EU, with the exception of up to 2 kilograms of powdered infant milk, infant food, or special foods/special pet feed required for medical purpose, provided that -

  • The product does not require refrigeration before consumption;
  • It is a product of packaged proprietary brand and
  • The packaging is not broken.

For fishery products (including fish and certain shellfish such as prawns, lobsters, dead mussels and dead oysters), passengers** are allowed to bring in such products up to 20 kilograms in total, or one fish that weighs 20 kilograms or over.

* Except those arriving from Croatia, the Faeroe Islands, Greenland, or Iceland with less than 10 kilograms of such products for personal consumption.

** No weight restriction for those arriving from Faeroe Islands or Iceland.

For updates and more details, please visit the European Commission Food Safety website at http://ec.europa.eu/food/animal/animalproducts/personal_imports/index_en.htm

All sharp items must be placed in checked baggage. This includes knives of any sort, metal nail files, scissors, tweezers, and so on. If any of these items are found in your carry-on luggage, they will be confiscated by security, and not returned to you. Cathay Pacific Airways will not assume any responsibility for confiscated items.

For information on the carriage of needles and syringes please see Carriage of Medications/Sharps.