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North America’s Top Camping Sites

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In North America you can find a plethora of super urban cities and settlements and also a host of natural attractions like exciting natural parks, hiking and trekking areas, and some of the best picturesque and thrilling camping sites. No wonder this is why different national parks and other natural settings get so many travelers and tourists from different parts across the world to visit their camping sites.

 

If you are a nature lover with its inexplicable abundance then North America with its wide superfluity of choices of camping sites is just the place for you. Here we shall make a list of the popular camping sites that you can check out for your upcoming vacation plans.

 

Apply for your ESTA Authorization here.

 

Yosemite National Park – The Yosemite National Park is situated near the western Sierra Nevada in the region of central California. It is bounded by the Sierra National Forest on the southeast and by the Stanislaus National Forest on its northwest. The park covers an area that is spread across four counties. It has also been declared to be one of the World Heritage sites. The park is famous for its beautiful waterfalls, exquisite clear streams, interesting granite cliffs, the glorious natural lakes, meadows, mountains, and glaciers. This is a park that contains a wide variety of biological species. Nearly 95% of the park is reserved as untouched wilderness. The vegetation mass can be divided into five major subzones.

 

Joshua Tree National Park – This is another prominent American national reserve that is again situated near to California. It is situated on the eastern side of Los Angeles and is in the nearby vicinity of the Palm Springs and San Bernardino. The park is well known for its reserve of the Joshua trees that is a native species to the location of Mojave Desert. The park was declared as a national park in the year 1994. The national park is spread across an area of 790,636 acres making it a little bigger than the Rhode Island state. The park is a home to different varieties of flora and fauna that can offer a spectacularly exciting experience.

 

Glacier National Park – Based on the United States – Canada border, the Glacier national park is one of the most prominent national parks of North America. The park is spread across an area of 1 million acres and encompasses certain sections of the Rocky Mountains. This park was initially inhabited by the native ethnic Americans. Later the region was dominated by the European explorers. The mountains of this park were said to have begun their formation well over 170 millions of years ago. This region is the home to a vast number of native animal and plant species. The moose, grizzly bears, wolverines, mountain goats, and the Canadian lynxes also inhabit these forests and valley lands.

 

Acadia National Park – This national park of America is situated in the US state of Maine. The park within its sanctity preserves nearly half of the Mount Desert Island along with a number of smaller adjacent islands and also a section of the Schoodic Peninsula. This park was originally called Sieur de Monts. Later it was called the Lafayette National Park in the year 1919. The name Acadia was given finally in the year 1929. A recent survey points out that nearly 3.5 million visitors and travelers came to see the park in the year 2017. The park includes natural elements like the long stretching oceanic coastline, mountains, and woodlands of deciduous and coniferous trees, ponds, lakes, and wetlands.

 

Big Bend National Park – This famous national park of North America is based in Texas. The park is a significant national feature as is considered to be the biggest projected and reserved area in the region of Chihuahua Desert. This national park is the habitat of more than 1200 species of plants and also harbors more than 450 species and varieties of birds. You can also 75 specifies of animal and a total of 56 reptiles. This park is also a rich geological labyrinth where you can get dinosaur bones, sea fossils and also volcanic dikes. The park runs along the Rio Grande that serves to be a boundary between US and Mexico. This is why visitors to this park have to adhere to a good number of rules.

 

Yellowstone National park – It is yet again one of the most famous national parks that can be found in North America. In fact, situated in Wyoming, the Yellowstone National Park is one of the first ever national parks of the US and also the world largely. The park is renowned for its wildlife diversity and other geothermal features. The Old Faithful geyser is one of the chief attractions. The park has a diverse ecosystem however it is the subalpine forests that are the most prominent ecosystem layer. Yellowstone National park also has other attractions like the canyons, the natural lakes and rivers and also the mountain ranges. Yellowstone Lake is one of the central attractions of the park that is centered on the biggest super volcano of the country – Yellowstone Caldera.

 

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Great Smoky Mountains – The mountain range originates from the North Carolina – Tennessee border and they are a sub-range to the famous and iconic Appalachian Mountains. The locals even refer to the range as ‘Smokies”. The park was established in the year 1934. Millions of tourists come to visit this park every year. This national park is included within the International Biosphere Reserve. The park is the natural habitat of the oldest forests of the Mississippi River Region. This place is also known to have the largest population of black bear and also the most diverse of the salamander.

 

Arches national park – Located in eastern Utah in North America, this is a national park that is just adjacent in its position to the Colorado River. The park boasts of 2000 and more natural sandstone arches that will also include the famous Delicate Arch. The park is also the home to many other geological formations and other significant resources. The park, in fact, boasts of the highest number of natural arches in the whole world. The park receives less than 10 inches of rainfall every year on an average. The park receives an estimation of 1.8 million tourists every year. It was originally called a national monument. However, the idea was revised and in 1971 it was designated as a national park.

 

The Adirondack Mountains and park – The Adirondack Mountains and the encircled park (that is encompassed by the mountains) is a massif situated in the northeastern part of New York. The boundaries of the park and the mountains correspond. The mountains give rise to a rough circular dome that is about 260 km in its diameter. This is one of the most interesting sites for camping in North America. The place has a heavy forest that includes a large variety of vegetation, species of trees and different types of animals, birds, and reptiles. There are marshes, swamps, and bogs that contain painted turtles spotted salamanders and a host of other animals.

 

Olympic National Park – This is a national park in North America that is situated in Washington. The park is based on the famous Olympic peninsula. The park consists of four different geographic regions – the Pacific coastline, the temperate rainforests, the alpine areas and the eastern side forest which is comparatively a drier area. The park within its frame boasts of three different ecosystems that will include the wildflower meadows, the subalpine forests and the rugged Pacific coast. The park has been declared by UNESCO to be an International Biosphere Reserve. In the year 1981, it was also declared to be a World Heritage Site.

 

Zion National Park – Located near Springdale in the southwestern region of Utah the Zion National Park is one of the most prominent national parks of North America. Zion Canyon is one of the significant features of this park. The walls of this canyon are reddish-tan hued. The park has unique geography being cradled between the Great Basin, The Colorado Plateau, and the Mojave Desert. It has different ecosystems and life zones that contain a wide diversity of animals and plants. There are over 289 types of birds, 75 species of mammals and 32 varieties of reptiles in the park. The different ecosystems of the park consist of the woodlands, the desert, the coniferous forests and the riparian. Within the Zion National Park, you can see beautiful mountains, magnum opus canyons, flowing rivers, and pristine natural arches. It is one of the best places for camping in North America. This is one of the most popular destinations when it comes to attract tourists and travelers from all over the world. This park receives millions of visitors every year.

 

Badlands National Park – The list of the national parks and natural reserves for camping in North America is never complete if we do not consider the name of Badlands National Park in South Dakota. To be precise it is based in the southwestern part of South Dakota. The park is the homeland of one of the biggest unscathed mixed-grass prairie in the US. It contains eroded buttes and the pinnacles. This is the habitat where one of the most endangered mammals of the world – the black-footed ferret has been reintroduced and is being fostered for a bigger population.

 

Crater Lake National Park – The Crater Lake is considered to be the fifth oldest national reserves and parks in North America. It is the only national park that is located in the southern region of Oregon. The caldera of Crater Lake is one of the chief attractions of this park. The Mount Mazama which is a destroyed volcano is also one of the attractions of the place. The park is encircled with hills and beautiful forests. It is one of the best places for camping and trekking. The Crater Lake is the second deepest lake in North America and it holds the ninth position for the same parameters when evaluated across the world. The lake has a striking blue color that attracts millions of visitors every year.

 

The Mount Rainier National Park – This national park is one of the prime attractions of camping in North America. This national park is based in the southeastern region of the Pierce County in Washington. The park was inaugurated and opened to all in the year 1899. It was opened as the fifth national park of the US. The Cascade Range is the highest point in Mount Rainier national park. The park has various attractions like rivers, lakes, waterfalls, and mountains. It is the home to a wide diversity of flora and fauna and it attracts a large gamut of visitors from all over the world every year.

 

See also: 5 things not to do with an ESTA

 

The above mentioned national parks are just a few of the national parks and reserves that can be found in different parts of North America. The continent of North America is a large one and it has diverse natural resources and ecosystems throughout its length and breadth. Hence this is a continent where you can find a large variety of camping sites and attractions that can cater to different types of people with different requirements and likings.

 

Before you think of moving out for a camping trail first make a clear understanding of the type of place that you wish to see. Mind the weather conditions too. This will help you to have a fruitful and a safe camping experience in the place. Additionally, you must also do detailed research about the prohibitions and the other rules and regulations that you need to follow once you are in that place.

 

eTA and ESTA- an Easy Way to Visit North America

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Travelling around the world is interesting and intriguing. We get to see the world and experience the differences that create a rainbow joining the poles so apart from each other. Earlier times travelling the world was not that much hard as the geographical barriers were convenient enough to cross with the newly invented ships and railroad. Paperwork was also a lot less compared to now. But as time went by and times changed, the security around geographical boundaries became tighter.

Paperwork increased and the concept of visa was slowly built up upon. Each and every country had different requirements that needed to be met prior to issuing the visa for that country. North America was a favorite with tourists for its raw beauty but the long process of procuring a visa often drew many away from travelling to the country and experiencing its culture. And the visa for every country differed. So application for making visas was also developed upon. Also, the visas were categorized as issued as required.

Apply today and get your ESTA Authorization by email!

The Concept of Visa

Visa is a permit to visit a country that you don’t have citizenship of. To enter the geographical boundaries of a nation that is not your motherland you need to fill out an application form stating your purpose of visit and the time you require to stay over there. Along with this, you need to assure the authorities that you have no past criminal records whatsoever or any kind of court cases pending against you. After a thorough background check is done and the details that you have provided are verified the visa application is forwarded for further checks. The visa is issued once all the checks are complete.

Categories of Visa

There are many different categories of visa to sort out the priority of the visa and to keep a track of migration as well as visitors. Also, the categories help both the country and the foreign land to keep an eye on the flow of people and eliminate any possible threats. Following are the visa categories available for issuance.

  1. Work Visa
  2. Student Visa
  3. Tourist Visa
  4. Dependent Visa
  5. Immigrant Visa

These visas are further divided into various sub categories. Each country has its own list of visa subcategories. Visiting North America for a foreigner can be quite tedious due to its huge visa requirements. To lessen the burden of issuing a visa for every small trip meant to last only a few days, electronic authorization was developed. This authorization was only given to the citizens of that country who checked under the Visa Waiver list. This made it easy for both the authorities handling the inflow and outflow of tourists and the tourists visiting the country.

Touring North America

Travelling to North America has become quite easy now as many different varieties of visa are available. Obtaining a visa can be a bit difficult for those citizens whose mother country does not have a bilateral agreement with North America. On the other hand, if you are from countries like Great Britain, France and Spain then you can visit the continent without a visa provided your tenure of the visit is no more than 90 days or one and a half month. Having a travel visa for North America also gives you a free pass to travel to Canada on minimum paperwork. North America is a huge continent and there is no end of tourist places to go and visit. You can also pay a visit to Mexico although some other extra formalities might be needed to be filled out.

Making an application for a visa is now even easier with the digital world progressing at a fast rate. There are ways to enter North America without a visa as well if you are well acquainted with the visa waiver procedures and you fulfil the requirements for the same. eTa and ESTA are two electronic mediums through which you can visit North America and Canada respectively without a visa. Let us have a clearer look at eTa and ESTA as these two are often confused as another type of visiting visa.

Check here the requirements for obtaining an ESTA Authorization.

What is eTa?

  • eTA is for Canadian entry and is an electronic medium of authorization that gives you a clearance to board a flight and enter the country without a visa provided you fall under the Visa Waiver Programme.
  • It has a validity of five years from the time of its issuance and is not at all connected to the number of days that you are allowed to stay in the country without a visa.
  • eTA normally makes the long difficult process of obtaining a visa easier and if you want to visit the country for a few days you can easily use this authorization to enter the country and go around. For a few day tour plans, you would now no longer need to apply for a visa and go through mind-numbing extra-long procedures.
  • eTA basically means Electronic Travel Authorization. It is a basic transit pass that helps you to catch your flight from a Canadian airport without a visa. But then also you will need to provide all the required documents at the immigration check center.
  • If you have already been to the country before on an eTA then you need to show the required proofs and a valid passport. Having a permit also speeds up the process and increases the chances of you getting a re-entry to the country.
  • Only the travelers who are availing the services of flights need an eTA. Travelers who are securing entry into the country through a bust, ship or train do not need to produce an eTA.
  • Also, if you belong to the U.S. you do not need to possess an eTA. Canadian citizens also do not need to apply for this transit authorization.
  • Those who belong from the Visa Waiver program can apply for the flight clearance but those belonging from other countries that do not fall under the visa waiver list need to have a visa if your travel route is via Canada.

What is ESTA?

  • ESTA is an electronic authorization or flight clearance for visiting as well for transit through USA air and sea ports.
  • You can apply for this clearance if your native country has bilateral agreements and falls under the checklist of the Visa Waiver Program.
  • Having an ESTA helps to get easy passage through North America although the passage and entry are very strictly regulated by the border security officials and the other concerned authorities.
  • While applying for ESTA under the Visa Waiver Program it is of utmost importance that you do not hold a travel visa.
  • You have to provide all the proofs and also employment records if needed to gain entry via ESTA.
  • The full form for ESTA is Electronic System for Travel Authorization. You can easily apply online from your home, office, or even a coffee shop.
  • Ensure that you have a valid passport. You must be a citizen of a country that comes under the Visa Waiver Program.
  • The ESTA allows you a stay for lesser than 90 days for either travel or business purposes. But to enter the country you must have complete and original documents to show to the authorities.
  • Immediate approvals for Australian travelers were already available but for security reasons, they have been withdrawn and now the Australian citizens visiting the USA for a shorter period of time have to apply for an ESTA Authorization at least 72 hours in advance. If this application is not done and processed on time the airlines can deny the flyer from boarding the flight.

Applying for eTA and ESTA

If you have plans visiting both USA and Canada then we invite you to apply for ESTA and for eTA – the Canadian online travel permit. Each of them is valid separately and permits entrance

eTA Application:

  • The eTA application form is quick and simple to fill. All you’ll need are your personal details and contact information along with proof of identity and scanned copy of the documents.
  • If your application is taking time to get processed then do not fret as it might sometime take some days to verify and process all the information.
  • It is advised that you pre-book your eTA first before you book your flight ticket as a potential delay may also detain you from boarding your flight and thus causing you a huge financial loss. And of course, will disrupt your plans.
  • You can fill up the application one by one if you are visiting with a group of people.
  • Be careful while entering your passport number as entering a wrong passport number might result in cancellation of your trip and transit pass.
  • Once your application is processed you will receive the eTA on the e-mail address you had provided earlier while filling out the form.
  • The check-in at the airport ensures that you have the correct passport and all the identity proofs with you. In case you had to provide additional documents carry the original of those documents as well.

See also: 10 Ordinary Things not to Bring with You on the Airplane

ESTA Application:

  • ESTA application is also made online. The application form is pretty straightforward and you will need to put in only the amount of information asked for.
  • While filling up the forms you will need to fill out the answers to some questions asked.
  • You will be contacted through your e-mail or your contact number to inform you about your ESTA approval.
  • Only citizens of those countries falling under Visa Waiver can apply for this type of travel permit.
  • While checking-in, you will be required to provide all the related documents along with your valid passport. Remember to carry any additional documentation that you had uploaded while applying for your ESTA Authorization.

Although these mediums have lessened the load on issuing a visa, these two authorizations have some boundaries and these boundaries are strictly regulated. Although the permission is received almost immediately after application, lack of proper documentation can result in cancellation.

Now that you have a clearer idea of eTA and ESTA you are free to go on a North American tour anytime you want. It not only makes the procedure of your travel easier but also ensures that you get all the facilities that a person with a visa does. Also, it is important that you already have a return ticket after you get the clearance for boarding the flight without a visa. Enjoy a happy tour to North America and continue onwards to the dream country of Canada with your eTA and ESTA.

 

 

5 things not to do with an ESTA

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For various reasons including changes in political landscape, economic factors and security related issues, the norms for traveling to foreign countries and immigration can change. In the last decade, the visa and immigration rules for foreign nationals traveling to the USA have changed quite a lot. Based on factors like nationality, income level, job type and purpose of travel- you need to apply for different types of Visas to travel to the USA. In certain situations, you may actually enter US territory without having a Visa. While this provision has certain limitations, the ESTA has come across as an alternative for citizens of specific countries to travel to the USA without having Visa for a specified period.

Apply today and get your ESTA travel permit by email.

Nuances of ESTA you need to know

Intended to replace the I-94W green form, the ESTA was introduced by the Department of Homeland Security in the USA after the 9/11 attacks. Its objective is filtering entry of foreign nationals who can pose security threat to the USA.

ESTA is the abbreviation of Electronic System for Travel Authorization. This is a digital and automated framework used for assessing eligibility of applicants under VWP category countries for getting entry into the USA for a temporary period. 2009 onwards, the citizens of countries covered by the much touted Visa Waiver Program need ESTA clearance to enter the USA under certain situations. Once the ESTA application gets approved, it stays valid for a 2 year period. It is possible for the applicants to come to USA several times within that duration but they cannot stay for more than 90 days at one stretch. ESTA is required when the VWP country citizens enter the USA through air or water routes. It is not required for those who choose land routes.

The need for ESTA

The VWP country citizens may opt for ESTA under certain situations:

  • When they need to visit the USA for any business related needs and may have to stay in US states for a month or more.
  • If they want to enroll in short term courses in any US university.
  • If they need to do any internship in an institute or college in the USA.
  • If they want to travel in the USA and want to visit relatives etc.
  • When any of these requirements crop up on short notice.
  • If you need to undergo a short term medical treatment in the USA and that requires hospitalization for several weeks.

Learn the advantages of ESTA

There are quite a few benefits of applying for ESTA for the people living in the VWP countries.

  • ESTA gets approved much faster than any kind of US VISA. In most cases, applicants get Clarence in a few minutes online and application status is cleared in 72 hours maximum. This is much faster than Visa application which may take months.
  • ESTA approval does not require you going anywhere and it can be done online.
  • Once ESTA is approved, it is possible to pay several visits to the USA in next 2 years.

Check here if you are eligible for ESTA.

Important facts on ESTA you must know

There exist doubts and misconceptions about the ESTA even though it was made compulsory for VWP country citizens. These are:

  • Do not think ESTA is equivalent of a VISA-It would be wrong to think of ESTA as a substitute for a proper US Visa. A Visa enables you to work or study in the USA in legitimate way or apply for citizenship. With ESTA you simply get the chance to visit the USA for a limited period. It lets you stay in the USA for a period not exceeding 90 days at one time.
  • ESTA does not work without passport- Your passport must be proper to get clearance for ESTA. It is based on the information mentioned in your passport, the approval for ESTA is given. In fact, the two year validity of ESTA is short terminated if the applicant’s passport validity expires within that period. If the information in your passport is changed for any reason and you have ESTA approval, you have to re apply for it.
  • ESTA application submission can yield any of the 3 responses- when you apply for ESTA online, there can be any of the three responses. You may receive approval soon (Authorization Approved), or you may need to wait to get clearance (Authorization pending) and or face denial (Travel Not Authorized). In the last case, you cannot opt for ESTA to travel to the USA.
  • ESTA is required by all applicants- The citizens of VWP countries will need to apply for ESTA, it does not matter what the age or gender is. Even the kids are covered though their parents can apply on their behalf.
  • ESTA does not guarantee entry to US states- While approval for ESTA lets the people of VWP nations travel to the USA, a final screening awaits them. After arriving to the USA by ship or flight, each ESTA cleared foreign national is screened by the S. Customs and Border Protection department. The US customs department has the right to deny entry to people they find unsuitable even if they have ESTA approval at this point.
  • ESTA denial does not mean ‘no entry’ to the USA- A lot of people feel let down when their ESTA application is turned down. If you receive denial upon applying online for ESTA, it does not mean you are barred from visiting the USA forever! You can still very well apply for an US Visa by visiting the US embassy.

See also: What to Do If You Need Medical Care While Visiting the United States

Things you should not do when opting for ESTA

There are a number of things that you should not do when opting for ESTA. These mistakes can reduce your chance of getting approval and may lead to troubles later. These are:

  • Overlooking the passport issues – It is always necessary that you cross check the passport details both before applying for ESTA and before traveling with ESTA. It may so happen that your passport details got changed after obtaining ESTA approval. In that case, you may be denied entry to USA even with valid ESTA! This can happen when the US customs department spots discrepancy in your ESTA information and that of the passport. The passport has to be digital or machine readable too. It is also necessary that you check the passport expiry date before traveling to the USA with ESTA. You may stay for 90 days with ESTA in the USA but if your passport expires before 90 days you can’t stay after that date. If the visit is for an urgent purpose, you have to be careful on this aspect.
  • Opting for long term career opportunities- The USA has some of the top educational institutions and universities and they lure millions of students. However, it would be wrong if you use ESTA to visit the USA for study. Only short term courses can be covered by ESTA. For anything more than 90 days, you will need a Visa.
  • Overlooking ESTA for visiting a different country through the USA- The citizens of VWP nations need to apply for ESTA even if they use US airports for visiting different countries.
  • Applying for ESTA without much time in hand- It is true that application for ESTA does not take much time and most applicants get clearance. However, you should not apply at the eleventh hour! You have to think of all possibilities to be on safe side. What if the application is rejected for any reason and you have little time to apply for an US Visa? That is why it is prudent that you apply for ESTA at least 2 months before you travel date to the US destination. That leaves you with enough time to apply for standard Visa if ESTA is rejected.

Not keeping documents ready and lack of confidence- Even after you obtain clearance for ESTA, there is a final round that you need to clear to get entry to the US territory. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection department will screen you to determine any security risk after you arrive at any US airport with ESTA. This is a crucial stage and you have to be careful. Certain mistakes may make the customs agents deem you with suspicion and that may mar your prospect of getting final clearance! Lack of confidence and inability to answer their questions with clarity may lead to denial of entry. It is necessary that you answer all queries without showing nervousness or fumbling- to begin with. It is better that you keep documents along with to show as evidence of your answers. This can be necessary when you are planning to visit some relatives or friends in the USA. Documents pertaining to any medical treatment or course also need to be kept ready at this phase.  With confidence and preparation, this can be cleared without much hassle.

10 Ordinary Things Not To Bring With You On The Airplane

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Security is becoming very stringent all over the world due to terror threats and this situation has raised the security and safety grades of national and international flights all over the world. In the U. S., the safety of flights is taken more seriously than any other country. Many common items are banned in the U.S. airlines flights.  No one wants to miss a flight but it happens quite often, especially for first-time flyers. Flights are missed even after reaching the airport on time and embarrassing situations are created because people are not aware of security rules and they end up carrying things with them that are confiscated at the airport security checkpoint. This causes unnecessary problems other than delayed or missed flights.

Apply today and get your ESTA document by email!

If you are flying with any US airlines then you must know that they have beefed up their security checks at the airport and many new rules have been put into place.  The safety and security of the flights and the passengers is the first priority of the TSA (Transport and Security Administration). With frequent terror threats, TSA has increased the check-in time and a very strict open check-in process is followed at the security check. If you are caught with any item that is not allowed, you might find yourself in trouble and your item may also be confiscated. Therefore, to avoid any trouble you should acquaint yourself with the list of items that are allowed and those that are banned on flights.

The first thing that all passengers should know is that there are two types of baggage allowed on every flight. The first is check-in baggage that is deposited at the airlines counter when you check-in for your flight. This is the heavy suitcases that go into the cargo area of the airplane. The other type of luggage is what you are allowed to carry with you in the seating area of the aircraft. This is known as cabin baggage. Cabin baggage is smaller in size and lighter in weight and can be easily carried with you.

There are certain items that cannot be kept in the hand baggage but are allowed in check-in bags and there are certain items that are not allowed in both.  To resolve your confusion, here is a list of items that can be carried in your luggage and that can’t be carried at all both in checked-in luggage and cabin bag.

So, let’s get started with 10 things that are not allowed in both the checked bag and cabin bags:

  1. Explosives and replicas of explosives: Explosives are considered a threat to aircraft and are not allowed in the flights. You must remember that even the replicas of these items (even if they are toys) are not allowed in the flights. If you carry such items or replica of such items unknowingly, airlines will not accept any excuse and might call the explosive experts or the police and the bomb squad. This situation will lead to emergency and costly evacuations, delays and missed flights. Some of the dangerous items that you cannot carry on the flight with you are fireworks, gunpowder, and flare guns.
  1. Flammable liquids and solids: Flammable liquids or solids are restricted in flights and they cannot be carried in checked-in baggage or cabin bags because they can cause fatal accidents and endanger the safety and security of the passengers and the crew members. Most of these products are banned from carrying but there are exceptional cases where a limited amount of items likes aerosol toiletries, such as hair spray, hair mousse, antiperspirant can be carried on the flights but only in checked-in baggage. Following is a list of flammable liquids and solids that cannot be carried in the flights and are completely banned:
  • Fuel
  • Paint
  • Gas torches
  • Torch Lighters
  • Flammable glues
  • Thinners
  • Solvents
  1. Household items: There are many household items that are considered hazardous or dangerous to be carried on the US flights, and they cannot be carried in either checked-in or cabin baggage. Some of these items are:
  • Bleach
  • Spray Starch
  • Insecticides
  • Drain cleaners
  • Aerosols
  • Bathroom cleaners
  • Grill lighters, matchbox, lighter fluid- allowed in carrying bags
  • Paintball gums
  • Any kind of poisons
  • Infectious materials
  • Corrosives
  • Organics
  • Radio-active materials
  • Magnetic items

The rules related to some of the above-mentioned items may vary, therefore, you should check with your airline if you want to take any such item with you.

Check here if your passport is eligible to apply for ESTA travel permit.

  1. Marijuana: Laws related to marijuana vary from state to state. Some states in the US allow the limited use of marijuana after the age of 21 while others don’t. But rules related to marijuana are the same for maximum flights and it is clearly not allowed to bring marijuana on flights. In fact, you can’t carry it past the TSA security check screening point, and you also cannot carry it in either carry bag or checked-in bag. You should also know that you may be prevented from boarding your flight if you are intoxicated because you won’t be able to react properly during an emergency, and you will become a hazard for both crew members and other passengers. It is not allowed even if it is for medical purpose and prescribed by the doctor. The smoking zone also prevents the use of marijuana.
  1. Self-heating meals / ready to eat meals: Due to the self-heating element, such meals are not allowed in most of the U.S. flights. The rules may vary for different airlines. Some airlines may allow them in the cabin baggage and others in checked-in bags and some don’t allow these meals at all. Liquid or gel items more than 3.4 oz are also not allowed. Before taking any such item, you must cross check with the airline authorities and get a clear picture of their policies related to food and self-heating meals.
  1. Sole insoles that contain gel: Gel sole insoles are banned because they are said to have more than 3 ounces of liquid and they can leak if punctured. Along with gel insoles, other gel items that are banned are gel candles and child soothers. All such gel items will be confiscated at the check pint.
  1. Grenade shaped items: Any toy or bottle or even a perfume bottle that looks like a grenade should be left behind at home as they are not allowed in flights. Any such thing can be confiscated and you can put yourself in unnecessary trouble.
  1. Peroxide: No matter how much you love using it in the day to day life but it is a complete no-no in the flights. You can buy peroxide locally once you reach your destination as they are easily available in most of the countries.
  1. Brie cheese: Brie cheese is considered to be a liquid and will be taken away at the airport security checkpoint. Thus, instead of losing your favourite cheese you should make the arrangement of getting it couriered to your destination.
  1. Protein powder: The TSA does not allow protein powder on board and no logic or reason will work with them. In fact, other powdered substances like instant coffee, powdered milk or spices are also not allowed on board.

See also: How the Recent Brexit is Affecting Your Travel to the USA

10 Things Allowed in Checked-in Baggage but Not Allowed in Cabin Bags

  1. Defence sprays

You cannot carry pepper spray or mace with you in your pocket or carry bag into the cabin of the plane, but you can have it in your checked-in baggage. However, do remember not to carry more than 4 ounces.  It is always better to tell your airlines at the checkpoint if you are carrying pepper spray in your checked-in baggage when you reach the checkpoint. If you walk through security with the pepper spray canister, metal detectors or the screening method will detect them. Secondly, if you look suspicious to the authorities, you will be questioned and your pepper spray canister will get confiscated, and this can also lead to you missing the flight. If you want a pepper spray for your safety while travelling, you should buy a new one after reaching your destination or courier it to your destination before you reach there.  Sprays that are not allowed in the flights are:

  • Pepper spray
  • Mace
  1. Electronic cigarettes/ vapour cigarettes: Both E-cigarettes and vapour cigarettes generate an excessive amount of nicotine and they are not allowed in cabin bags by some airlines. However, some airlines do allow them so check with them. Few flights allow you to carry them in your cabin bag but they have a strict no-smoking rule on the flight. In fact, flights will not let you board if you have attempted to smoke or smoked your E-cigarettes in previous fights. Therefore, to keep yourself away from such embarrassing situations, you must not try to smoke these cigarettes inside the premises of the airport.
  1. Household items: Household items that are not allowed in carry-on bags but allowed in checked-in baggage are:
  • Metal knives of any length
  • Box cutters
  • Razors
  • Ice picks
  1. Samsung Galaxy Note 7: US airline passengers are not allowed to use or charge their Samsung Galaxy Note 7 on planes because the batteries of the Note 7 can catch fire and explode. Other than US airlines, Qantas, Jetstar, Virgin Australia, and Indian Airlines have also banned the use and charging of the Note 7. Some airlines have also banned the charging of mobile phones even in switched off mode.  You are not allowed to use or charge Samsung Galaxy Note 7 but you can carry them in your checked-in baggage.
  1. English Christmas crackers: These crackers create the sound of bang while splitting apart that can confuse travelers and hence they are not allowed in your cabin baggage, but you can pack them in your check-in baggage.
  1. Snow globes: If your snow globe has less than 100 ml of liquid then you may carry it in your check-in bag but because there is no way to measure the liquid, there is a possibility that you might have to give it up at the airport if you are questioned.
  1. Throwing stars: These stars are considered as weapons and are not allowed in cabin bags. In fact, any kind of martial art weapons are not allowed in flights. Some flights may not allow them in check-in baggage either. Therefore, it will be a good idea to ask your airline about the rules and regulations related to throwing stars or any martial art weapons.
  1. Sports equipment: Except for sports parachutes most equipment related to sports are banned in US flights. Some of these may include:
  • Bats
  • Rackets
  • Darts game
  • Hiking stick
  • Ice skates
  • Fishing rod
  • Diving equipment
  • Crossbows and arrows
  • Swords
  • Javelins
  • Golf clubs
  • Canoes and paddles
  1. Professional equipment: If you are a plumber or mechanic who needs a lot of equipment in the day to day life and you want to carry it in your flight then you must pack this equipment in your check-in baggage, but only after cross-checking with your airline whether these items are allowed or not. Some of the equipment definitely not allowed in the hand luggage are:
  • Cutting tools bigger than 6 cm
  • Drill and drill accessories
  • Cutting mats
  • Saws
  • Hammers
  • Aerosol paint
  • Paint thinner
  • Blade and screwdrivers

10: Guns: They are weapons and are hence not allowed in the handbag. Only empty licenced guns are permitted in your checked-in baggage, but they should be locked in a hard container. There may be an additional fee for carrying a gun in your luggage. Hence, you must check with your airlines regarding the rules and regulations of carrying guns in flights. It is important to check these regulations because the laws related to guns may vary from one US state to another.

If you are traveling anytime soon within the US or to the US, the information in this article will ensure that you do not get into any trouble due to ignorance.