Can You Put Shoes In Your Hand Luggage? Find Out Here!

Is It Okay To Pack Shoes In My Hand Luggage? - Our Guide

If you are travelling with hand luggage only or maybe you've run out of space in your checked luggage, you might be wondering if it's possible to put your shoes in your hand luggage? 

Can You Put Shoes In Your Hand Luggage?

Shoes can be put in hand luggage normally with no issues as long as they fit into a bag, you should be careful that your hand luggage does not exceed the dimensions and weight as ruled by the airline.

We've put together a guide below which will take you through what shoes you might not be able to pack in a carry-on baggage, some things to consider when packing shoes, tips for packing shoes and more.

Which Shoes Are Not Allowed In Hand Luggage? 

Although the majority of shoes are okay to pack in your carry on baggage, some shoes might not be allowed in your carry on if they could be used as a potential weapon. 

For example, stilettos and high heels are normally okay to pack in carry on luggage but could be used as a potential weapon if the heel is big enough and sharp enough. Same goes for ice hockey skates, due to their blade they will have to be packed into checked luggage.

Things To Consider When Packing Shoes

Packing shoes in carry on bags might not be as simple as it seems, you do need to consider a few important things to avoid having problems with your carry-on luggage.

  • They add weight - Shoes can be very heavy, due to the fabric and soles, especially if you are carrying shoes like boots, for example, this can add a lot of weight to your carry-on bag which tends to have a weight limit anyway of about 7kg. Double-check the bag to make sure your not over the maximum weight limit.
  • They are dirty - Shoes are not sanitary, they can make other items in your carry-on luggage dirty if you're not careful.
  • Takes up the room - Due to their bulky size, you will need to dedicate a lot of the space inside of your hand luggage to carrying shoes, types of shoes can use your whole carry on bag if you are not careful.
  • They can get squished - Some types of shoes might get squished if you try to cram them in your carry on bag, this often means they might need to go on top inside of your luggage, reducing your access to other important items.

Tips For Packing Shoes In Luggage

If you've decided to pack shoes in your carry on baggage or even checked, they can take up a lot of space and weight, to help you pack your shoes properly, we've listed some essential packing tips down below.

  • Clean shoes well - We recommend grabbing a shoe cleaner or disinfectant before carrying your shoes in your luggage, any type of footwear might come into contact with clothes in your luggage.
  • Maximise space with heels - Heels can be fitted together like Tetris or a puzzle if you pack smart, maximising your space.
  • Stuff with smaller items - There are two reasons why you should stuff your type of shoes when possible, reason one is that it helps your shoes to hold their shape, and reason two is that it allows you to make use of the space inside of the shoes.
  • Add protection - We recommend wrapping your shoes in plastic bags and topping them with clothes in between and on top, this helps to protect your shoes during travel and stop them from having an impact or getting knocked about in your suitcase.
  • Utilise the side pockets - If you're travelling with shoes like flip-flops, make use of the side pockets in your luggage since these can lie down flat.
  • Pack down the bottom of the case - Packing your shoes down the bottom of your suitcase helps to distribute weight evenly when travelling.

What Should I Not Pack In My Carry On? 

Figuring out what you can and cannot pack in your carry on can be confusing, so to help you avoid being held up at security we've listed which items you can and cannot pack in your luggage below. 

  • Tools above 7 inches - Any blades or tools over 7 inches should not be packed in hand luggage and will be removed by security since they could be used as a weapon.
  • Liquids over 100ml and flammable items - Flammable items are not allowed in carry on luggage. Liquids over 100ml also have to be packed in checked and cannot be taken through security.
  • Self defense items - Self defense items such as pepper spray, black jacks and martial arts weapons are not allowed to be taken in a carry on.
  • Guns and ammunition - Gun and ammunition cannot be packed into carry on luggage, some might be allowed in checked with special airline permission.
  • Lots of alcohol - Over 70% of alcohol is not allowed to be packed in hand luggage and anything over 3.4 ounces.
What Should I Not Pack In My Carry On?

What Are The Best Shoes For Flying? 

When you're flying on a plane, you want to make sure you're as comfortable as possible, and shoes are one item that you need to make sure are high in comfort. 

We've listed some things to consider in your flying shoes below. 

  • Avoid flip flops - Flipflops have a naked back heel which isn't ideal for travelling in an emergency.
  • Think easy - You will likely have to take off your shoes when going through security, make sure you've got some easy footwear to take on and off without too many laces or straps.
  • Avoid bulky shoes - Bulky shoes can take up a lot of space in your carry on and under the seat, try to avoid big boots or slippers.
  • Bring compression socks - Compression socks are important for flying otherwise your feet can swell up when flying, they also allow you to move around the plane without shoes.
  • Make sure they are breathable - You can get sweaty when flying in your shoes for a long time, make sure your slights are light and breathable.

Frequently Asked Questions About Shoes In Hand Luggage

What are the restricted items for hand luggage?

Blades and tools over 7 inches, flammable items, explosive items and liquids over 100ml should not be packed in hand luggage.

What are the weight restrictions? 

For hand luggage, most people have a weight restriction of 7kg, packing shoes might add to this heavy weight so you should be cautious about how much you're packing.

Are there tips for carry-on only luggage?

If you are travelling with carry-on only luggage we would recommend using compression cubes, rolling clothes instead of folding them, using the personal items allowance and trying to prioritise.

How do I keep my shoes clean in my suitcase?

We would suggest spraying them with sanitiser or putting them in plastic bags to stop dirt from spreading onto clothes and other items.

Can I pack roller skates in hand luggage?

No, roller skates should be packed in checked luggage not hand luggage due to their sharp blade which could be used as a potential weapon.

What causes luggage to have additional screening?

Anything which looks like a weapon, restricted items, powders and electronics can cause luggage to get taken for additional screening. This will require TSA to look at the item by hand and confiscate anything restricted.

Should you take your shoes off on a plane?

There's no reason as to why you can't take your shoes off on a plane, but we would recommend wearing socks to protect yourself from germs and spreading them around the plane. 

Compression socks are a good idea to stop your feet from swelling on a plane.

Why do we have to remove shoes when going through security?

Airports have to scan shoes due to an attempted terrorist attempt in 2001 where a passenger tried to detonate a bomb with his shoe while boarding a plane.

Can You Put Shoes In Your Hand Luggage?

Last Words

Overall, you can put shoes in your hand luggage with no issues, but they are very heavy so we would recommend checking the weight allowance for your suitcase. To utilise space we would suggest stuffing the shoes with small items and cleaning them well, avoid taking bulky shoes like boots.

About this Guide

Written By Alex
Last Updated On July 10, 2022
Reading Time 
7 minutes
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