Can You Take Dinnerware on a Plane? (Dinnerware Set in Hand Luggage)

Can You Take Dinnerware on a Plane?

You are excited to head home and use the fancy dinnerware you got as a gift from your loved ones on your holiday. But before you hop onto that plane, make sure you familiarise yourself with the rules of traveling with dinnerware and glassware on a plane.

You can take dinnerware on a plane, which is allowed in hand luggage and checked-in bags. However, sharp knives or forks are strictly not allowed as they can be used as potential weapons. To take the dinner safely on the plane, make sure you pack every item securely to prevent breakage. 

Keep dinnerware in its original packing, pack in the hand luggage or plop it with the rest of the luggage and get it checked in at the airport? These are just some of the questions we will answer when you read on.


Can You Take Dinnerware Set in Hand Luggage?

You can take a dinnerware set in hand luggage, but they can be heavy and exceed the weight limit. The dinnerware set cannot have sharp knives or anything resembling a weapon. Also, the airport security can choose to refuse to board any article they deem dangerous on a plane. 

When people want to take their dinnerware on a plane, most choose their carry-on luggage as a first option. It seems easier to keep the delicate pieces close under your watchful eye at all times. But is it a good idea?

Dinnerware in hand luggage is not a bad idea if you want to keep your precious pieces close to you. Hand luggage is more secure than checked-in pieces, and you can safely tuck it in the overhead compartment on the plane. If you pack it securely, the dinnerware pieces have more chances of making it without a scratch to the end of the flight.

In general, the security officers do not prohibit dinnerware in travelers’ hand luggage. Still, if airport security finds something doubtful, they may ask you to leave it or shift it to checked-in baggage. If the dinnerware is packed intricately but creates concern on X-ray at the security checkpoints, security may ask you to unpack your entire dinnerware.

  • Make sure you remove any blunt items like knives or forks, as these are not allowed and could function as weapons.
  • Hand luggage has a limit on weight, dimension, and pieces and can differ between airlines, but generally, a weight of 7 to 10 kg (15 to 22 lbs) in a 56 cm (22 in) height hand luggage is the standard.
  • There is a restriction on very tall or wide luggage as otherwise, they won’t fit in the airline’s overhead compartment. Make sure you research your airline’s requirements before flying and avoid unnecessary trouble at the airport.

Now that you have the green signal to take your dinnerware with you, your next step should be figuring out how you will carry them safely.


How Do You Pack Dishes on a Plane?

You may pack your dishes while carrying them on a plane by wrapping them in bubble wrap or packing paper. You can also pack dishes by purchasing specialized storage sets for dinnerware online. Do not forget to mark your luggage as fragile before checking them in at the airport.

Ensuring your dishes are secured in your luggage, whether hand-carried or checked in, will avoid the disappointment of broken pieces when you arrive at your destination.

Let’s elaborate on each of the points in detail.

Bubble Wrap the Dishes

There is no such thing as too little bubble wrap. Use as much as you can and cover each item from every side individually. You can also fill the gaps between dishes in a suitcase with bubble wrap.

The bubble wrap is easily available at any hardware store near you, but if you want to purchase online, I recommend AmazonBasics Perforated Bubble Cushioning Wrap (available from Amazon.com).

This foot-long roll of good quality bubble wrap provides enhanced protection against breakage. The perforated lines also make it easy to tear off a strip without having to find a pair of scissors.

Use Packing Paper for Fragile Dishes

Investing in high-quality packing paper can be the difference between your dishes arriving safely or in a mess of broken pieces. Packing paper is essential when moving fragile items and provides cushioning for delicate articles.

Bryco Goods Packing Paper (available from Amazon.com) for moving has 320 sheets and is large enough for big-sized dishes too. It’s also an unbleached paper which makes it more environmentally friendly.

Find Storage Sets Customized for Dishes Online

Many sets are available online or in hardware stores that are perfect for an entire dinnerware set. These sets save ample time in packing and are usually quilted for extra protection. You can also inquire about a specialized set for your dinnerware at the place of purchase.

Honey-Can-Do Dinnerware Storage Set (available on Amazon.com) is a quilted dinnerware set that can house 12 inches (30 cm) dinner plates, 10 inches (25 cm) salad plates, 8.5 inches (21 cm) saucer plates, and cups. These storage casings will also be helpful to store your dishes at home and prevent them from collecting dust.

Stand the dishes on their sides and fill space between clothes or more bubble wrap. Do not pack too dense to put excessive pressure on them or too light to give them space to move around.

This video by My Move on Youtube explains how you could essentially pack your china in a cardboard box in a few steps:

You can use the same tips when packing dinnerware in luggage. You can fill the excess space with clothes and other soft items you need to carry.


Frequently Asked Questions About Bringing Dinnerware on a Plane

Can You Carry Glass Plates on a Plane?

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) allows passengers to carry glass items such as plates and vases as carry-on or checked bags on a plane. However, the final decision rests on the particular TSA officer whether the item will be allowed through the checkpoint. 

Can I Bring Glassware in My Carry On?

You can bring a variety of glassware items in your carry-on luggage, including vases and glass-covered picture frames, according to the TSA. However, travelers must keep in mind that it is always at the discretion of the TSA officer on-site whether your items may pass through the checkpoint. 


Final Verdict

You can generally carry dinnerware with you in both hand carry or checked-in luggage.

Pack your dishes individually using bubble wrap or packing paper, or customize storage sets if you have enough space. Once you have packed them securely, have a stress-free flight, and hopefully, when you arrive, your dinnerware will be unscathed, ready to impress your dinner guests.


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