People travelling with crotchet needles sometimes find themselves faced with the decision of whether or not to take them because they are not sure of the regulations. Generally all airlines produce a list of regulations regarding what can and can’t be carried in the hold and hand baggage for security reasons. Some items are put on the prohibited list if they are considered "dangerous goods." Airline security world over has become tighter in recent years following the US September 11th terrorist attacks. Regulations have been created to safeguard passengers and promote airline safety.
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Before you travel
Before travelling it is always good practice to check the prohibited list of the origination and destination countries to save you time and inconvenience. It’s also important to remember that certain items might not be on the prohibited list but they could still be confiscated if they are considered dangerous by the security officers.
Crotchet needles allowed
In the UK some crotchet and knitting needles are allowed in both hold and hand luggage but again it's not all airlines that allow. "Scissors with blunt or round-ended blades (metal or plastic) less than 6cms (2.3 inches) in length, or scissors with metal blades and pointed tips under 3cm (1.18 inches are permitted." However the airlines have restrictions on "objects with a sharp point or sharp edge capable of being used to cause serious injury" or scissors longer than 6cm (2.3 inches) are not permitted in hand luggage but may be allowed in checked in luggage but still check with the airline. For example Easy Jet does not allow knitting needles or scissors on board.The decision ultimately rests with the security officers of whether your crotchet needles are considered dangerous and capable of causing harm or not.
Tips from the Industry
Generally the knitting industry recommends that "circular needles should not be longer than 79cm (31inches) and wooden or plastic ones are less likely to cause a problem than metal ones." Again it's recommended to put shorter needles in your hand luggage preferable in a pencil case and the longer ones in hold luggage. Bring crotchet needles with yarn to save your work in case the needles are taken away. Also to avoid losing your knitting tools, take a self-addressed envelope with you so that if they are not allowed through, the security officer might be able to send them home for you. It's also a good idea to print the airline's regulations regarding crotchet needles so that you can show them if they question you.
Finally when travelling internationally remember each country has its own regulations, so check them before you travel. Check the particular airport's and airline's regulations as they could well differ with the above. Think safety when travelling, don't take anything you consider sharp and dangerous, this will cause you less distress and inconvenience.
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