Tips for Successfully Carry Fishing Gear on Flights

fishing rod

While going on a fishing trip can be exciting, not many people enjoy having to tow around their gear wherever you go. This can be even more of a problem if you are planning to fly somewhere else with the fishing gear, as the rules around how to pack and what you can pack become even tighter. That said, we will try our best to help you know exactly how you can pack your things for a successful fishing trip.


From a flight safety perspective, your reels are something that you would not have to worry much about. Unlike other types of fishing gear such as hooks, they do not have any sharp or otherwise hazardous components. 

When it comes to packing your reels, it is better that you place them in your carry-on surrounded by padding such as your clothes. Alternatively, you can use a reel travel case if you want to separate them. If you are bringing reels for your trolling rods, however, you will need separate luggage because they are a lot larger.

Nevertheless, if you do decide to bring your reels in your carry-on, remember to remove the lines. Many airports will require you to do this for safety reasons.


While TSA does allow you to carry certain lures with you, we highly recommend that you do not do so. That is because if you end up carrying hooks, especially large ones for big fish, you might get into trouble with security.

If you absolutely need to bring your lures, flies, and hooks in your carry-on, then check with the airline regarding their policy first. If they do allow you to take them into the plane, then print out their reply so that you are prepared to explain to security in case they stop you.


Some types of rods, called travel rods, are extremely portable and can be tucked into your carry-on. These smaller rods, however, won’t be of much use when dealing with larger fish. You’ll probably need to bring something bigger, such as a trolling rod, as well. These larger rods can be checked in as sports equipment.

Before you do this with your heavier rods, however, make sure to check with the airlines about their sports equipment policies. That way, you can be certain that you won’t run into trouble.

Other Equipment

What about all the other equipment you need to bring? Well, you can always apply the typical mindset you have when packing anything else. For instance, any items that are a potential threat to security, such as knives and metal holders, should all be in your check-in luggage. If you’re not sure, it’s best to check with the airline to be safe.


By carefully learning of airline policies and packing your fishing equipment properly, it is likely that you will go through airport security without any issue. That said, if you do run into trouble, do not try to argue your way out. After all, security could stop you from flying at all.

A better approach to this situation would be to get on their good side. Carefully explain to them how the airline allowed you to bring your fishing gear and maybe share a few fishing stories to make your case more believable. That way, the situation won’t escalate and they might just let you through.

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