TSA & Liquid Medications

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Feb 24, 2018
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#1
I’m flying from the US to Italy soon on UA & need to bring meds that are in liquid form, i.e., 16oz in a sealed opaque plastic bottle clearly labeled “Rx.” What do I need to do (or have) to get this through TSA — note from prescribing doctor? Something else?
 

Neil Maley

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Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
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www.promalvacations.com
#2
Here you go:

3-1-1 Liquids Rule Exemption

You may bring medically necessary liquids, medications and creams in excess of 3.4 ounces or 100 milliliters in your carry-on bag. Remove them from your carry-on bag to be screened separately from the rest of your belongings. You are not required to place your liquid medication in a plastic zip-top bag. If a liquid, gel, or aerosol declared as medically-necessary alarms, then it may require additional screening and may not be allowed


Make sure you bring them in their original bottles showing they are prescribed to you. And it doesn’t hurt to print out the TSA rule and bring it just in case you get an uninformed agent.

https://www.tsa.gov/travel/special-procedures
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#3
I have experience with this issue -- I would get a note from the dr just to be safe. I have offered it up and only once was it needed. Give yourself extra time at security as they likely will swab the bottle for explosive residue. Also if you will be carrying the medication back through Italy or any European city you will certainly need the dr's letter; prescriptions in Italy and Europe are not labeled the same way as they are in the US and the letter from the dr is mandatory -- the italian phrase for prescription is "ricetta medica".
 

mmb

Verified Member
Jan 20, 2015
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#5
How does the ‘take it out of bag and put in bin’ advice apply if you are in the TSA PreCheck lane?
As I read it, these liquid meds are not part of the items that get the free pass in the PreCheck lane.
Would there be a problem if I DO have the liquids in a ziplock bag? I have an Rx shampoo right now and would want to protect my other items in case it leaked.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#6
If a liquid rx is 100 ml or less and fits into the plastic bag there is no need to take it out in Precheck. The OP was asking about a 16 oz medication which would not fit in the plastic bag. I have been Precheck for years and did take out the large liquid rx bottle.
 
Likes: VoR61
Sep 19, 2015
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#7
And there is no problem with having a larger separate plastic bag with a prescription liquid. It is likely that the plastic bag would be opened and the bottle swabbed for explosives. By taking any larger RX liquids out before screening it saves time in Pre-Check security as the bag will not be flagged for having a large liquid (etc) inside. I am sure that most of us in Pre-Check have seen the occasional Pre-Check passenger's bag pulled aside as they forgot there was a bottle of water or perfume in the bag. Once that happens the bag is opened and the TSA agent starts to look through it, takes the liquid out, etc and it is more time consuming. The scanner will not know that the liquid is a prescription medication until the TSA agent sees it -- this is why I recommend taking it out before hand if it is over the regulation size, even in Pre-Check and in all foreign airports, to save time.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
14,280
13,571
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#8
How does the ‘take it out of bag and put in bin’ advice apply if you are in the TSA PreCheck lane?
As I read it, these liquid meds are not part of the items that get the free pass in the PreCheck lane.
Would there be a problem if I DO have the liquids in a ziplock bag? I have an Rx shampoo right now and would want to protect my other items in case it leaked.
We have pre check and I still take that out and put it in the bin. Last time I didn't my bag got spit into the "extra screening" bin lane and I had to pull it out anyway.
 
Jan 22, 2015
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#13
One other suggestion. Contact a local college and have the doctors note translated into Italian so that there is no confusion on the other end, just in case they don't speak or read English.

Edit: Reason I say contact a college is most schools have languages taught there and can put you in contact with a professor.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#14
One other suggestion. Contact a local college and have the doctors note translated into Italian so that there is no confusion on the other end, just in case they don't speak or read English.

Edit: Reason I say contact a college is most schools have languages taught there and can put you in contact with a professor.
Honestly, from my experience, this is not necessary. The security personnel in the Italian airports are multilingual with the major languages of the EU, especially English-- and this is Rome, Milan, Florence...

I have seen drs. in Italy. The problem with getting a local language instructor is that the medical terminology is not something most would know unless they are a dr. or medical translator- same with looking up the medication name (brand name and chemical compound name).

The security wants to see the original letter written on the drs letterhead -- and my dr's letter written in English was fine.

If the dr's letter was written in Chinese, Japanese, Russian, etc, a notarized translation of the dr's letter would be necessary.