Your jewelry might be one of the last things you think about when you prepare for your trip. But there are certain rules that you have to obey when you travel with jewelry as well. And if you are not aware of them, you could have unpleasant surprises at the airport.
Here is everything you need to know about traveling with jewelry.
Can You Wear Jewelry Through Airport Security
The answer to this question depends on the jewelry. If the jewelry is small and doesn’t contain a lot of metal, it most likely won’t trigger the alarm. So, you should be able to wear your earrings, bracelets, watches, or necklaces without any worry as you pass through the security check.
The airport security alarm will detect bulky jewelry that is made of metal material. If you like to wear bulky jewelry, made of metal, you’d better put it in your carry-on, so it doesn’t trigger the alarm.
TSA recommends wearing the jewelry, as long as it is small and doesn’t come with a lot of metal. Doing so speeds up the screening process for everyone.
What Happens If Your Jewelry Sets Off The Screening Alarm
If your jewelry sets off the screening alarm, the protocol requires you to go through additional screening. This additional screening more often than not means that a security officer will give you a pat-down.
This type of checking could be uncomfortable and even invasive for some people. During the pat-down, the security officer will want to check and touch all parts of your body, which also includes the groin area. And no matter how you look at it, a pat-down is never a pleasant experience. If no prohibited items are found in your possession, the security officer will let you move on. If they find prohibited objects, they will either confiscate them from you and let you go if they are not dangerous, or start a more in-depth investigation to see why you were carrying them in the first place.
So, most people want to avoid the pat-down and remove their jewelry, even if it is not the bulky type that might trigger an alarm.
Besides that, going through a pat-down will slow down the checking process, which is another inconvenience that passengers would rather avoid.
TSA Rules For Jewelry In Carry-on Bag
The TSA rules are not very strict when it comes to jewelry. You will have to place the metal ones that are big and heavy into your carry-on bag, so they don’t trigger the screening alarm. The regular, small jewelry, from earrings to wedding rings are safe on you so you will not have to remove them.
But how heavy should the jewelry be for the screening alarm to detect it? This depends a lot on the type of metal used to make the item. The screening gate you walk through is based on magnetic detection. Silver and gold are not known as highly magnetic metals, so they will hardly trigger the alarm. But there are pieces of jewelry that contain more iron than precious metals and these will most likely set off the alarm. Plastic jewelry doesn’t disturb the magnetic field and it will not trigger the alarm, no matter how big they are.
With so many types of jewelry on the market, you will have to use your judgment and analyze if the pieces you wear will be detected by the screening gate.
TSA also recommends putting your metal jewelry in a separate bag from the rest of your belongings in the carry-on bag. By doing so, you ease the screening process and you will also have your bag organized in a better way.
How To Carry Valuable Jewelry
It is important to mention that, when you can avoid it, you should leave your most precious jewelry at home rather than take them with you when you travel. You will move a lot during your flight and your baggage will go through a lot of hands too. It can be stressful to keep an eye on your valuable belongings during such a trip and losing them or having them stolen from you, will cause you a lot of emotional damage as well. Also, expensive jewelry is a magnet for thieves.
But if you have to bring such items with you, there are certain things you can do to increase your safety and make sure your jewelry stays safe as well.
Get insurance for your jewelry
Insurances can come in handy even when you don’t have super expensive jewelry with you. Make sure the insurance you get covers as many risks as possible so you can use it to recover the value of your objects.
Make an inventory
Take a picture of each valuable item in your bag. Some insurances already ask for this step but it may be also helpful just for you. Sometimes you might get confused due to the hassle of traveling and not remember exactly what you packed in your suitcase and what you wanted to pack but you left at home. Thus you can simply check the inventory before you get worried that one of your valuable objects is missing.
You want your box to have a locker to make sure it is stored safely in your hotel room or airbnb.
Don’t flaunt it
If you are wearing expensive jewelry during the scanning process, you can also ask TSA to scan you in private.
Can You Wear Jewelry On The Plane?
Once you passed by the security check, you can wear your jewelry as you wish on the plane.
Just keep an eye on your valuable items at all times, jewelry, or other types of items.
Let us know your tips on traveling with jewelry in the comments below.